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Former world champion Alessandro Ballan finished 24th in the final standings. (Dr. Scott Major photo.)
Former world champion Alessandro Ballan finished 24th in the final standings. (Dr. Scott Major photo.)

Kohler 15th Overall At Santos Tour Down Under

22. January 2012

Adelaide, South Australia

The BMC Racing Team wrapped up the Santos Tour Down Under Sunday with Martin Kohler finishing 15th overall and the satisfaction of him having led the WorldTour season-opening race on two separate occasions.

Good Start

For BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Rik Verbrugghe, it was a good start. "The only thing missing was that we didn't have anyone finish in the top 10," he said. "But the team rode really well and we were an offensive team. Everyone was motivated to make a really good result and that's one of the most important things." Kohler, the Swiss national time trial champion who wore the leader's jersey on Stages 2 and 5, said he surprised himself. "It was a great week for me and I hope I can keep the form," he said. André Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) won the final stage and Simon Gerrans (GreenEDGE) took the overall on tie-breaker criteria after finishing the six-day race tied on time with Alejandro Valverde (Movistar).

Van Avermaet In A Break
BMC Racing Team's Greg Van Avermaet, who was seventh on Stage 2, figured in a brief breakaway during Sunday's 90-kilometer race that comprised 20 laps of 4.5-km circuit through the streets of Adelaide. "For me, the race was more training," he said. "I tried to be on a good level early, but I think if you want to be good in April you can't be 100 percent in January." The BMC Racing Team's seven riders who competed in the race now head to Spain to join the rest of the squad for a final week of training camp.

Click here to see photos from the stage: flic.kr/s/aHsjye7m2g