Please choose your territory and language
France, English

team news

When snowplows needed to clear the final climb, race officials decided to shorten the race. (©BMC/Tim de Waele.)
When snowplows needed to clear the final climb, race officials decided to shorten the race. (©BMC/Tim de Waele.)

Volta a Catalunya, Stage 3: An Unusual Day

21. March 2012

An extraordinary day at the Volta a Catalunya Wednesday ended with an unusual outcome when race officials decided to nullify the rain and snow-laden race that was abruptly shortened from 210 to 155 kilometers.

Top 10 Either Way
With a 12-man breakaway – which included BMC Racing Team's Johann Tschopp – leading by nearly 10 minutes, officials decided to eliminate the last two of four major climbs on the race's queen stage. Tschopp was listed as placing eighth behind apparent stage winner Janez Brajokovic (Astana Pro Team) in abbreviated results that were later negated. Assistant Director Rik Verbrugghe said the decision didn't significantly affect the BMC Racing Team. "If they had taken the time of the stage with the time gap, we would have had Tschopp moving into the top 10," he said. "But as it is, Steve Morabito stays in the top 10 with his fourth place overall."

Van Garderen Withdraws
Tschopp said he was simply following orders when he initially made a break with two others in the first hour of the race. Their group grew larger and led by more than 12 minutes as the temperature dropped and rain turned to snow. "Rik told us to try and get in the breakaway and I was feeling good," Tschopp said. "But the weather made it a really hard day with the rain and the snow and the wind." Conditions were bad enough that BMC Racing Team's Tejay van Garderen was one of many riders to abandon the race. "I already wasn't feeling 100 percent when the race started and when there'e extreme conditions like this, I wasn't going to get any better," van Garderen said. When racing resumes Thursday, Stage 1 and 2 winner Michael Albasini (GreenEDGE Cycling Team) will still be in the overall lead, 92 seconds ahead of Morabito.

Click here to view photos from the race.