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Steve Cummings (leading) is one of four BMC Racing Team riders who have the same time as the overall leader. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)
Steve Cummings (leading) is one of four BMC Racing Team riders who have the same time as the overall leader. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)

Tour Méditerranéen, Stage 2: Staying In Contention

14. February 2014

The BMC Racing Team kept its riders for the overall classification in good position Friday, the eve of a double-stage day at the Tour Méditerranéen.

The Stage:
Traveling 170.6 kilometers from Cadolive to Rousset, the course included three categorized climbs and several small, uncategorized climbs in the final 20 km.

The Day's Breakaway:
Jarlinson Pantano (Colombia) and Jussi Veikkanen ( escaped in the first 20 km and gained a nearly seven-minute advantage before the Giant-Shimano-led peloton started bringing the gap down. Pantano was the last of the two to be caught, with 19 km to go.

Late Escapes:
Several riders attacked in the closing kilometers, including Cyril Gautier (Team Europcar), who was joined by Fabio Andrew Duarte (Colombia). After the pair was brought back, Romain Sicard (Team Europcar) soloed to a slight advantage before being joined by Yury Trofimov (Katusha Team). But the peloton was intact with five km remaining.

The Podium:
Race leader John Degenkolb (GER) Team Giant-Shimano won his second straight stage ahead of Yannick Martinez (Team Europcar) and Armindo Fonseca (Bretagne-Seche Environnement).

Best For The BMC Racing Team:
Steve Cummings finished 17th and sits 15th overall, in the same time as Degenkolb. Also even on time with the race leader are Ben Hermans (20th), Yannick Eijssen (43rd) and Amaël Moinard (53rd). Taylor Phinney, one of the BMC Racing Team's hopefuls for the time trial, finished in a group 2:11 down.

Injury Report:
Larry Warbasse crashed with 40 km to go. He has several abrasions on his knees and the right side of his body, but was not seriously hurt.

What Steve Cummings Said:
"It was a hard stage again, like yesterday. But it was different because yesterday was the wind. Today was more left and right, up and down, very nervous. So we had to stay in front. There was a big crash before the last climb and we were just behind a bit. Thor Hushovd and Amaël Moinard brought me back to the front. In the final, I could follow the first on the climb. And then, after the climb, I couldn't follow some moves because the race was pretty stretched and no one really had control. I managed to stay in the same group to keep the same time as everyone else. So that was good."

What Sport Director Max Sciandri Said:
"We had a little look at a result and it didn't really happen but I think we had our GC (general classification) guys in front and that's what probably counts. We have Steve and Ben up there. That's good. Overall, I'd say things went pretty good. We're happy."

Looking Ahead:
Saturday features two stages: a 63-km road race in the morning and an 18.2-km individual time trial in the afternoon.

More Coverage:
- Listen to interviews on the BMC Racing Team Audio Line.
- See photos from the race in the BMC Racing Team Flickr gallery.