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Taylor Phinney won his first race since earning the Under 23 world time trial title at Geelong, Australia last September. (photo: Sirotti)
Taylor Phinney won his first race since earning the Under 23 world time trial title at Geelong, Australia last September. (photo: Sirotti)

Taylor Phinney Wins Eneco Tour Prologue

8. August 2011

Amersfoort, The Netherlands

Taylor Phinney scored his first victory for the BMC Racing Team Monday by winning the prologue of the Eneco Tour of Benelux. The reigning Under 23 world time trial champion was the only rider to break seven minutes on the narrow, 5.7-kilometer course.

Seven Second Victory
Blazing through the final turns on his BMC timemachine TM01, Phinney displaced eventual fourth-place finisher Alex Rasmussen, then waited on the hot seat while the final 18 riders took their turn. Norwegian national time trial champion Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky Pro Cycling) came the closest, stopping the clock seven seconds slower than Phinney's winning time of six minutes and 57 seconds. "I'm super, super happy," Phinney said. "I was surprised at how good I felt in my warm-up. I knew it was going to be a good day. This is a good race for me. Racing in Belgium and Holland is kind of my thing. It's what I love to do. There's another time trial in a couple days, so if I can try to hold onto the leader's jersey until then, I definitely will. We have great riders and great staff here, so I'm looking forward to the challenge."

Power Course
Phinney enjoyed the benefits of a dry course after rain slickened the course for the early starters. "It was just a power course. I was able to go through it really fast," he said. The former U.S. national time trial champion and owner of two elite world pursuit championships (2009, 2010), one junior world pursuit title (2008) and one junior world time trial championship (2007) came close to winning the Tour de Romandie prologue in April. There, he conceded the victory to Jonathan Castroviejo by .27 seconds. "This was really a great victory for Taylor because he really wanted to win this race," BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Fabio Baldato said. "He told me yesterday he wanted to do reconnaissance and then he did more this morning. With him in the lead, the team is  motivated to protect him and he's in good condition."