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Tejay van Garderen (leading) always had a teammate around him during Sunday's stage. (BMC/Watson)
Tejay van Garderen (leading) always had a teammate around him during Sunday's stage. (BMC/Watson)

Tour de France, Stage 15: Protecting Van Garderen

20. July 2014

The BMC Racing Team rode at the front Sunday to protect Tejay van Garderen when wind and rain battered the peloton on the day before the Tour de France's second rest day.

Fifth Overall With Six Stages Left
"Today was nervous and dangerous," BMC Racing Team Sport Director Yvon Ledanois said. "I told the riders our No. 1 objective was to be all together with Tejay in the front. We did not have an objective for the stage, only for Tejay." Alexander Kristoff (Katusha Team) won a field sprint that dashed the hopes of breakaway riders Jack Bauer (Garmin-Sharp) and Martin Elmiger (IAM Cycling). The pair was caught in the final moments after being in a breakaway for nearly the entirety of the 222-kilometer race. Van Garderen placed 34th and in the same time as the stage winner. With six stages to go, he is fifth overall, 5:49 behind race leader Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team), but only 72 seconds out of second place. "It was looking like today was going to be a sprinter's day, but the wind and the rain made it a day when you had to be mentally switched on," van Garderen said. "I am glad the rest day is tomorrow. I just want to mentally recover – do a little face time with the family. Today was no mental recovery. So it id all about taking advantage of tomorrow."

Listen to complete comments from Ledanois and van Garderen on the BMC Racing Team's Tour de France Audio Line.

View photos from the race in the BMC Racing Team's Flickr gallery.

Watch behind-the-scenes videos on the BMC Racing Team's YouTube channel.