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Cadel Evans (center) finished fourth on the stage to move into fourth overall. (©Casey B. Gibson photo. (©Casey B. Gibson, www.cbgphoto.com.)
Cadel Evans (center) finished fourth on the stage to move into fourth overall. (©Casey B. Gibson photo. (©Casey B. Gibson, www.cbgphoto.com.)

USAPCC, Stage 1: Evans Fourth

24. August 2011

Crested Butte, Colorado

Cadel Evans of the BMC Racing Team finished fourth Tuesday at the USA Pro Cycling Challenge as Levi Leipheimer (Team RadioShack) won the stage and took the overall race lead.

Altitude Concerns

When Leipheimer put in an attack on the long, uphill drag to the finish, Evans tried to follow. But the Tour de France champion said he felt the effects of racing at altitude and having only one week to acclimate. "Today, the strongest guy won," Evans said. "Levi sat quiet and waited and waited and then put it all on the line in the last 500 meters. Chapeau to him. He was well-prepared and is riding well. The guys who are well-adapted and acclimatized to the altitude are always going to be at an advantage. I'm just sort of taking it as it comes." Evans sits fourth overall, 17 seconds behind Leipheimer, in the overall standings.

Queen Stage Wednesday
Evans said he hopes to recover better on the eve of Wednesday's queen stage, a 209.8-kilometer race that summits a pair of 3,700-meter peaks. "My recovery has been pretty terrible," the former world road champion said. "I came here with big ambitions, but not great expectations. There are guys who had time to prepare for it well, or recover from the Tour, or they didn't ride the Tour. So we'll see what we can do against them." The BMC Racing Team has three other riders in the top 10 besides Evans: Brent Bookwalter (sixth, at 34 seconds), George Hincapie (eighth, at 37 seconds) and Jeff Louder (10th, at 41 seconds).