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Taylor Phinney had a moment to celebrate his first professional road race victory ahead of the charging peloton Wednesday. (©BMC/Tim De Waele.)
Taylor Phinney had a moment to celebrate his first professional road race victory ahead of the charging peloton Wednesday. (©BMC/Tim De Waele.)

Tour de Pologne, Stage 4: Phinney Wins With Solo Effort

31. July 2013

Taylor Phinney attacked seven kilometers from the finish at the Tour de Pologne Wednesday and held off the charging peloton to impressively win the BMC Racing Team's second straight stage and score his first road race victory as a professional.

Click here to watch video of the final kilometers.

Baldato: 'He Was A Machine'
The silver medalist in last year's world time trial championship never had more than a 15-second advantage and only looked back moments before he sat up and free-wheeled his BMC teammachine SLR01 across the line. "I told Taylor he could try an attack, but it was amazing what he did," BMC Racing Team Assistant Director Fabio Baldato said. "It was like a prologue – and I was screaming that to him on the radio. I told him to go full gas and don't look back. He was a machine." Phinney said the finishing circuit – which was downhill in the last kilometer – made it ideal for an attack. But he wasn't expecting to go it alone. "With six-man teams here, I thought it would be harder to bring guys back, but nobody came with me," he said. "So I just put my head down and decided I wasn't going to look back and slowly commit to it and give it everything I had. It was twisty and turning enough that I could maintain a lot of speed. I had a lot of power, but the last couple of kilometers were excruciatingly painful. I crossed my fingers that it wouldn't be one of those finishes where the guy gets passed 20 meters before the line." Steele Von Hoff (Garmin-Sharp) and Yauheni Hutarovich (AG2R La Mondiale) finished second and third, respectively, while BMC Racing Team's Thor Hushovd – winner of Stage 3 on Tuesday – was sixth.

Thanks To Frank, Pinotti
Baldato said much like the teamwork that was on display for Hushovd's win, there was hard work put in before TV coverage began of the 231.5-km stage, the longest of the race. "For sure, I need to say thanks to Mathias Frank and Marco Pinotti," Baldato said. "Those guys did 200 kilometers on the front to bring back an eight-rider break that was really dangerous. The victory is thanks to those two guys especially." Phinney, whose last individual win came on the Stage 7 time trial at the USA Pro Challenge last August, said he had envisioned just such a victory – the BMC Racing Team's fifth in the past 10 days. "This is how I always dreamed of winning – foiling the sprinter's plans at the end of the race," he said. "It was sort of a Fabian Cancellara-style, Milan-San Remo victory scenario. It's really amazing to have it happen and it was a great feeling to finally put my hands up." Rafal Majka (Team Saxo-Tinkoff) kept the overall lead as the top of the general classification remained unchanged.