Phinney: ‘A Nervous Day’
Evans finished 40th and in the peloton, as race officials decided to take the finishing time at the three-kilometer mark of the 134-km stage due to the hazardous conditions. Sky Procycling’s Bradley Wiggins, who had been sitting fourth overall, had difficulty descending the final climb and was unable to chase back despite the help of five teammates. The defending Tour de France champion lost 3:17 and fell to 13th overall, 5:22 behind race leader Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team). Taylor Phinney said the BMC Racing Team’s top priority was keeping Evans – in second overall – out of trouble in the slick conditions. “It was a very successful day for the team,” Phinney said. “We just wanted to keep Cadel safe. He was the priority No. 1 and we kept him up in the front. It was a nervous day, but we all ride in these sort of rainy, cold conditions. So it was a better day for us than for other people.” Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) took the stage win, his third of this year’s race, and assumed the points classification lead from Evans.