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Sebastian Lander climbs to the finish after being part of the day's breakaway. (Photo by Judith Haudum, BMC Racing Team.)
Sebastian Lander climbs to the finish after being part of the day's breakaway. (Photo by Judith Haudum, BMC Racing Team.)

Tour of Austria, Stage 5: Lander In The Break

10. July 2014

Sebastian Lander of the BMC Racing Team was part of a breakaway Thursday that saw one of its riders survive to win the stage on a day when the Tour of Austria summited its country's highest mountain.

Solo For 20 Kilometers
Lander was part of an escape of nearly a dozen riders in the race that climbed the 3,798-meter Grossglockner midway through the 146.4-kilometer stage. "It was full gas pretty much the whole day because we had a guy from Cofidis who was only three minutes from the leader," Lander said. "So it made for an amazingly hard day. But I actually felt good." In the final 25 km, the past Danish national road champion attacked what remained of the breakaway. "I knew the last three kilometers were uphill," he said. "I was thinking it was my chance, especially if the guys didn't want to ride behind." But after 20 km on his own, Lander was brought back by his breakaway companions and Jesse Sergent (Trek Factory Racing) countered to solo to the stage win. Lander was caught by the chasing peloton in the final kilometer and finished 26th, 1:41 back. "It is a little bit sad because yesterday I was eighth in the sprint and today could have been great to have done something," he said. "But I am showing I can still be in the race and that I have developed myself in the climbs. So it is a personal result for myself. But the result on the list is missing – but it was almost there."

Eijssen, Hermans Withdraw
Larry Warbasse, in 13th place, was the BMC Racing Team's top finisher on the day, 1:02 behind Sergent, while Brent Bookwalter is the team's best-placed rider overall in 19th, 5:13 behind. Peter Kennaugh (Team Sky) remains the overall leader with three stages remaining. BMC Racing Team Sport Director Jackson Stewart said he was impressed with Lander's performance on such a difficult day. "To see him riding like this is pretty incredible," he said. "He is like a whole new guy. He was not the strongest on the climb, but he was really strong for it being such a good group. He is climbing like we have never seen him climb before." Two BMC Racing Team riders did not make it to the finish. Yannick Eijssen and Ben Hermans withdrew due to medical issues. "Ben had a problem with allergies that also became an upper respiratory problem," BMC Racing Team Chief Medical Officer Dr. Max Testa said. "Yannick developed an upper respiratory infection a few days ago, so he has become fatigued and has not recovered well."

See photos from the race in the BMC Racing Team's Flickr gallery.