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Darwin Atapuma (leading) paced teammates Tejay van Garderen and Greg Van Avermaet up the final climb. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)
Darwin Atapuma (leading) paced teammates Tejay van Garderen and Greg Van Avermaet up the final climb. (©BMC/Graham Watson.)

Critérium du Dauphiné, Stage 7: Decisive Stage

14. June 2014

BMC Racing Team's Tejay van Garderen slipped to 20th overall Saturday as the overall lead changed hands on the penultimate stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné.

'Have To Stay Patient'
On the race's queen stage – a 160-kilometer race that included five categorized climbs – van Garderen could not keep pace as the pace quickened near the summit finish in Switzerland. He finished 27th and is now 20th overall, 5:44 back, with a day to go. "I was hoping to stay with the leaders longer," van Garderen said. "I guess I will just have to take a step back and get a little perspective knowing I had an injury and it has taken me a little bit longer to come back to my same level than I thought. I just have to stay patient, stay confident and stay the course. I really believe that in July this will be behind me and I will be able to be right up there fighting for a good GC (general classification) place."

Van Avermaet In The Breakaway
Van Garderen crossed the line with teammates Darwin Atapuma, who is 23rd overall, 6:53 behind, and Greg Van Avermaet, who had been part of a breakaway of more than a dozen riders for much of the race. Van Avermaet said it was not easy to make the escape, but it confirms his form is good. "I am glad I finally made it to a breakaway because I have been trying for a couple days," Van Avermaet said. "It has been a hard week, but I am happy about my condition, especially with my way of climbing. I think it is good preparation for the Tour de France."

Lead Changes Hands
Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) attacked inside the final two kilometers to finish 20 seconds ahead of Chris Froome (Team Sky) and take the overall lead by eight seconds. The finish of the stage was equally as decisive as Lieuwe Westra (Astana Pro Team) sprinted past Katusha Team riders Yury Trofimov and Ego Silin in the final 150 hundred meters to score the stage win. The pair had attacked out of the breakaway and appeared headed for a 1-2 stage finish before Westra surprised them.

Listen to complete comments from Atapuma (in Spanish), Ledanois,  Van Avermaet and van Garderen on the BMC Racing Team Audio Line.

See photos from the race in the BMC Racing Team Flickr gallery.

Watch videos of the race on the BMC Racing Team's YouTube channel.