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Video: Van Avermaet sprints against Van Garderen for yellow in TTT

Posted on: July 9th, 2018

Van Avermaet nobbles Van Garderen on the line for yellow

Van Avermaet (circled) sprints from the back to pass Van Garderen (arrow) and grab the yellow jersey.

 

Van Avermaet made damn sure he took yellow

 

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Only one of them can wear the Tour de France yellow jersey. And so the other was always going to miss out. At the end of the day, Greg Van Avermaet went out and made sure he took it.

Both were part of the BMC Racing line-up that won the stage 3 team time trial at the Tour de France yesterday.

They knew out on the course they were on a good ride and had a great chance of winning. And with victory would come the likelihood of taking yellow.

At the start of the 35.5km stage, Van Avermaet and Tejay van Garderen were the team’s best placed riders.

They were both among a large group of men equal on time 16 seconds down on race leader Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe).

Coming into the finish, as you’ll see in the clip below, Van Avermaet was behind van Garderen. At the death he came from around him and sprinted hard as he could for the line.

Whatever the permutations of who would take the yellow jersey, he was making sure he finished ahead of Van Garderen so it would be impossible for the stage finishing order to disadvantage him in the battle for yellow.

He literally took a lead-out from Van Garderen and made damn sure he got across the finish line before the American.

If you look closely here, Van Avermaet is on the far right and Van Garderen is third from right.

Van Garderen gives the Belgian a little look when he realises his team mate has made sure to pip him on the line.

He would have taken yellow on countback anyway – his placings on stages 1 and 2 were better than Van Garderen’s.

But he was making sure no gaps emerged between him and Van Garderen at the back. And he was making sure to get ahead of his team mate to be certain there could be only one possible outcome; him in yellow.

He continues his sprint right to the line; though any additional effort was pointless once he was not fourth place man on the road; off of whom a team’s TTT time is calculated.

 

 

“I think we were really smooth today,” Greg Van Avermaet said of the group effort that brought him yellow after his last ditch all-out sprint.

“I think everybody did a good time trial and we were all working well together. We knew that Team Sky would be the team to beat.

 

Van Avermaet nobbles Van Garderen on the line for yellow

 

“And we also knew that it would be close. We worked together and that’s what team time trials are about.

“We stayed together with eight guys for a long time and on this parcours, that was the key to winning the race.”

“It was a goal to get yellow in the first week. I have worn it one time already and it was an incredible feeling.

“So, I am pretty happy to be in this position for a second time. I will enjoy it tomorrow because for any rider it is a special feeling.

“I want to thank my teammates as without them, it wouldn’t have happened.”

 

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