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Yannick Eijssen earned the Exergy Most Aggressive Rider jersey. (©Casey B. Gibson.)
Yannick Eijssen earned the Exergy Most Aggressive Rider jersey. (©Casey B. Gibson.)

Amgen Tour of California, Stage 4: Eijssen Most Aggressive

17. May 2012

On the longest stage – and the warmest day so far – of the Amgen Tour of California, BMC Racing Team's Yannick Eijssen earned the Exergy Most Aggressive Rider jersey Wednesday for being a part of two breakaways.

Attacked Multiple Times
Temperatures soared to 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 Celsius) as Eijssen was on the front for about 130 kilometers of the 209.6 km race, first in a three-man breakaway and later in an 11-man move. "What was hard for me was that I had already gone in the first breakaway," Eijssen said. "The first time I thought the peloton would stop riding, but Robert Gesink brought them back to us on the second climb. I was still feeling good, though, so I attacked again. This time 10 guys came with me." The escapees never enjoyed more than a six-minute lead, though, and the peloton reeled them in near the top of the last of six categorized climbs. "It was too bad they caught us so early because the last 25 km were really hard because it was so hot," Eijssen said.

Time Trial Thursday
In the overall standings, Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) extended his lead to 16 seconds by winning his fourth consecutive stage. Heading into Thursday's 29.7 km individual time trial, all six riders from the BMC Racing Team are 40 seconds off the lead. BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Michael Sayers said with the exception of having lost Steve Cummings and Steve Morabito to injuries sustained in a crash on Stage 2, everything is going according to plan. "I think the six riders we have left are fresher than a lot of guys," he said. "I think the tough season they have had up to this point is paying off and our main guys will do a good time trial." Sayers said the riders would get their first look at the 29.7 km course for Thursday's race by driving it in two of the Acura team cars upon their arrival in Bakersfield Wednesday night.