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BMC Development Team's TJ Eisenhart told reporter Pat Malach that having a strong team around him helped him hold the best young rider jersey through to the end. (Photo by Sean Weide, BMC Racing Team.)
BMC Development Team's TJ Eisenhart told reporter Pat Malach that having a strong team around him helped him hold the best young rider jersey through to the end. (Photo by Sean Weide, BMC Racing Team.)

Eisenhart Is Cascade's Best Young Rider

22. July 2013

TJ Eisenhart of the BMC Development Team won the best young rider classification Sunday at the Bend Memorial Clinic Cascade Cycling Classic while teammate Jakub Novak narrowly missed out finishing on the final podium.

Two In Top 10 Overall
Eisenhart, who finished seventh overall, took the lead in the best young rider category after Wednesday's Stage 1 and held on to win by 34 seconds over Gavin Mannion (Bontrager Cycling Team). "This is TJ's first year of racing outside of the junior ranks, so it is a big result for him," BMC Development Team General Manager Rik Verbrugghe said. Eisenhart said earning the white jersey at the longest consecutively run elite stage race in the United States is "a huge accomplishment" in his young career. "I'm very honored and very blessed to be have been able to won the jersey," Eisenhart said. "To have such a strong team around me to help me achieve this goal was an awesome experience." Both Novak and Eisenhart credited their teammates – especially Swiss Under 23 road champion Silvan Dillier and Arnaud Grand – for helping them late in the 133.5-kilometer circuit race.

Attacked On Final Climb
Novak came into the final stage third on the general classification, nine seconds behind Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly Cycling presented by Kenda) who held on to win overall. But Joey Rosskopf (Hincapie Sportswear Development Cycling Team), bumped Novak to fourth – by one second – on the strength of winning the stage (and a 10-second time bonus) and arriving in a small group five seconds before the peloton, which contained Novak and Eisenhart. Novak said he had his sights set on winning the stage and the yellow jersey, which he wore for one stage after taking the lead on Thursday. "I was just waiting for the final climb, with came with about three kilometers to go," he said. "I tried an attack there but they caught me at the top." Earlier, Grand had tried an attack of his own after riding in a 15-man breakaway. "I just wanted to stay easy and save my energy for the final," he said. "When it was clear we were going to get caught, I made an attack, but I couldn't stay away."