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BMC Teamleader Alex Moos on his BMC Time Trial Machine (Foto by Tim De Waele)
BMC Teamleader Alex Moos on his BMC Time Trial Machine (Foto by Tim De Waele)

Alex Moos puts in a strong performance on difficult Time Trial course

2. maggio 2008

Sion

The third stage of the 2008 Tour of Romandie presented the racers with a difficult and technical semi loop around Sion, Switzerland.  The course began with a basically flat 7 km section which led into a 3km climb gaining 200 meters in elevation with pitches reaching 17%. 

After this leg searing, lung bursting effort, the riders faced a technical descent into a twisting finishing section.  Alexander Moos kept himself in with a shouting chance on the GC by giving an excellent performance, toping the day off with a 12th place, just 48 seconds behind Andreas Klöden, the day’s top finisher.

A strong ride, though not a Time Trial specialist

The BMC racing team brought a strong team to the Tour of Romandie, though none of the team members may be considered a time trial specialist.  “The plan for the day was to focus on Alex’s ride and let the other guys take a bit of a breather,” Gavin Chilcott said.  “It was a hard course, so nobody was soft pedalling, but the plan went pretty well.”  Alex Moos finished his ride with the second best time of the day up to that point, but would be pushed back to 12th by the time all the heavy hitters had run the course.  “I am very happy with my ride today, it was a very good performance for me,” Moos said after the stage.  “It was a beautiful course, and I feel quite content finishing with such a reasonable time gap to an expert like Klöden.”  For making an “easy” day of it, the other BMC team members also put in very respectable performances, with Jeff Louder coming in 35th only 1:28 down and Ian McKissick trying on his TT legs for 40th at 1:31 off the pace.  “The other guys were going easy on purpose,” Chilcott explained.  “Tomorrow is a huge climbing day, and we wanted to help keep everyone as fresh as possible for the day.”

A good GC placing still in the back of the mind

Tomorrow’s penultimate stage will offer the biggest racing challenge that many of the riders at the Tour of Romandie will have had to face all year.  The stage will meander its way from Sion to Zinal. By way of the crow, the two towns are fairly close together, but the winding ride over four categorized climbs and a couple of others that could have categories, will be 126km, only about 18km of which could be considered flat roads.  “Tomorrow is a big stage with a lot of climbing, and riders will be separated by minutes,” Chilcott said.  “We will focus all our efforts on supporting Alex; he is on such good form and this is just the sort of stage where he can do very well – a top finish overall for him is not entirely out of the question.”  Moos is inclined to take it day by day and focus on the task at hand.  “I don’t know if I can think about the GC at this point since I unfortunately lost nearly two minutes on the 1st stage due to cramps,” Alex said.  “The ride into Zinal will be very difficult; I will focus on finishing the stage well and see what happens with the overall classification later.”

Coming to the end of a long two weeks for BMC

Having arrived at the Tour of Romandie directly from the Tour of Georgia, the staff members in particular are feeling the fatigue of the long days.  “Today was a welcome relief since there was no transfer necessary,” Chilcott said.  “It has been a long week, especially for the mechanics and other staff members.”  Bringing such a young team has been a learning experience for everyone.  “Everybody is so glad to be here,” Chilcott said.  “It is a fantastic learning experience, great testing ground and everyone will take away many valuable lessons.”  But the racing isn’t over and the team’s ambitions are still high.  “We will not divide our resources, and rather put our strength behind Alex.”