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Brent Bookwalter was the BMC Racing Team's first rider to the top of the Kitzbüheler Horn. (©AKP.)
Brent Bookwalter was the BMC Racing Team's first rider to the top of the Kitzbüheler Horn. (©AKP.)

Tour of Austria, Stage 3: Bookwalter In The Break

8. July 2014

Brent Bookwalter capitalized on his day in the breakaway to be the BMC Racing Team's best finisher, in 18th place, on a rain-soaked mountain-top finish on the Kitzbüheler Horn.

The Course:
The 206-kilometer race from Bad Ischl to the ski station at the top of the Kitzbüheler Horn culminated with a leg-breaking, 7.7-kilometer ascent averaging 12 percent gradient.

The Day's Breakaway:
Bookwalter was joined by nine others in the breakaway that began as the race crested the top of the first categorized climb, about 180 km from the finish. The escapees enjoyed a nearly five-minute lead before splintering on the final climb to the top.

The Finish:
Movistar Team's Dayer Quintana, younger brother of Giro d'Italia winner Nairo Quintana, soloed to the stage win out of the breakaway, 54 seconds ahead of Damiano Caruso (Cannondale Pro Cycling). Pete Kennaugh (Team Sky) finished third, 54 seconds back, and held onto the race lead.

The Overall Standings:
BMC Racing Team's Ben Hermans finished 31st on the day, 3:50 back, and slid from fifth to 20th overall while remaining the team's best-placed rider, 3:31 back of Kennaugh. Bookwalter's effort moved him from 43rd to 29th overall, 5:01 behind.

What Bookwalter Said:
"The weather was ugly at the end. It started raining with about 30 or 40 kilometers to go and just kept getting harder and harder and the temperatures were dropping. It got pretty grim. I felt OK, but it was not my best or my worst day. I thought I did a good job taking myself in the breakaway and had a plan to basically do a time trial all the way to the top. But I was lacking the power and some of the lightness to go with some of the smaller, climber-type guys."

What Sport Director Jackson Stewart Said:
"The plan was to have either Brent or Larry in the breakaway so Yannick (Eijssen) and Ben could have a chance to climb for the general classification. We thought that if the break went you could win out of it and that is what happened with Quintana."

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