Published on May 16, 2018

Fast and Flat Ride from Stockton to Elk Grove on Tap for Tomorrow

Women’s Three-Day Race Begins Tomorrow in Elk Grove

SAN JOSE / MORGAN HILL, Calif. (May 16, 2018) – BMC Racing Team’s Tejay van Garderen (Tacoma, Wash.) rocketed to a decisive stage victory and the overall race lead at the Amgen Tour of California individual time trial in San Jose / Morgan Hill today.

Van Garderen began the day in 8th place overall, exactly one minute behind the race leader Egan Bernal, Team Sky’s 21-year-old Columbian rider. Van Garderen, who picked up two Grand Tour stage wins in 2017 at the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España (Time Trial stage), made up that minute and more on the 21.6-mile loop, causing the Amgen Race Leader Jersey to change hands to the third owner since the race began on Sunday and extending his lead 23 seconds over Bernal, now second in the overall standings.

“Today was special motivation… I had my girls here, I had memories here from five years ago. I didn’t expect it to go quite this well but I kind of had it in the back of my mind on Gibraltar if I can keep it to within a minute, I can maybe take it today. Today was going to be my big power play, and I’m glad I was able to produce one. It feels great,” said van Garderen, who won the 2013 Amgen Tour of California and the Time Trial stage that year.

In the final three race days this week, BMC Racing Team will have to fend off challengers to the yellow jersey, which van Garderen has his sights set on retaining: “We really just need to worry about that stage into Tahoe, but we have a really strong team, and the motivation’s going to be high and if you’re going to want to beat me, you’re going to have to go to the bitter end.”

Stage 4 presented by TAG Heuer in San Jose / Morgan Hill featured cyclists racing the clock one by one on a looped course that featured one moderate climb. The gusty day blew apart the leader board with other shakeups including BORA-hansgrohe’s

Rafal Majka (POL) dropping from 2nd to 6th place in the overall (+1.29”) and Mitchelton-SCOTT’s Adam Yates (GBR) sliding from 3rd to 5th (+1.07”). Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale’s Daniel Martinez (COL) rose from 6th to 3rd (+.37”) and Bernal’s teammate Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBR) climbed from 11th to 4th (+.52”).

Bernal retains the Visit California Sprint Jersey, the Lexus King of the Mountain Jersey and the TAG Heuer Best Young Rider Jersey for the third day.

Stage 4 Podium

  1. Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA) 40'47"33
  2. Patrick Bevin (NZL), BMC Racing Team (USA) (+.07”)
  3. Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBR), Team Sky (GBR) (+.32”)

Jersey Winners after Stage 4:

  • Amgen Race Leader Jersey – Tejay van Garderen (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA)
  • Lexus King of the Mountain (KOM) Jersey  Egan Bernal (COL), Team Sky (GBR) 
  • Visit California Sprint Jersey – Egan Bernal (COL), Team Sky (GBR)
  • TAG Heuer Best Young Rider Jersey – Egan Bernal (COL), Team Sky (GBR)

Riders in good standing still have to defend their positions over the next three stages, including the grueling Stage 6 and the HC climb up Kingsbury Grade. Tomorrow’s Stage 5 presented by Visit California begins in Stockton. Sprinters should flourish on the 109.7-mile fast and flat stage to finish in Elk Grove, where the Amgen Tour of California Women’s Race empowered with SRAM kicks off with the first of three race days.

The 2018 edition of America’s premier cycling stage race covers 645 miles of roadways, highways and coastlines during seven stages from Long Beach to Sacramento

May 13-19, while the Amgen Tour of California Women's Race empowered with SRAM, showcasing the world’s best women cyclists, runs concurrently May 17-19, covering upward of 187 miles over three stages. The annual professional cycling events are the only U.S. races on the UCI WorldTour calendar (opens in new window) and continue to attract some of the most renowned cyclists and teams in the world.

Returning as title sponsor for the 13th consecutive year, Amgen, a biotechnology company in the race to dramatically improve patients’ lives, is proud to sponsor the Amgen Tour of California.

“The Amgen Tour of California allows Amgen to raise awareness of some of the world’s most serious illnesses, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease, as well as connect with patients through programs running in tandem with the race,” said Laura Hamill, senior vice president, US Business Operations, Amgen. “Amgen is headquartered in Thousand Oaks, California, and we are proud to sponsor this event that promotes the beautiful state of California, encourages a healthy lifestyle and stimulates the local economy.”

Leveraging its title sponsorship of the Amgen Tour of California, Amgen is raising awareness and connecting with patients through its Breakaway from Cancer® and Breakaway from Heart Disease™ initiatives. 

Breakaway from Cancer®, created by Amgen in 2005, is a national initiative to raise awareness of the important resources available to people impacted by cancer – from prevention to survivorship. Through its four independent, non-profit partner organizations – Prevent Cancer Foundation, Cancer Support Community, Patient Advocate Foundation and National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship -- Breakaway from Cancer® helps connect patients and caregivers to important free resources.

As part of the Breakaway from Cancer® initiative, Amgen will honor and celebrate cancer survivors and their support networks at each stage of the 2018 Amgen Tour of California. And the Breakaway from Heart Disease™ initiative encourages Americans to take charge of their risk of heart disease and represents a partnership between Amgen and the American Heart Association. The initiative is dedicated to empowering everyone to take action for good heart health through diagnostic screenings, courtesy of the American Heart Association, as well as providing information and tools related to physical activity and healthy eating. Amgen also has a partnership with the bike company Schwinn to encourage heart-healthy activities like bike riding.

Throughout the week, cyclists will wear Breakaway “I Ride For” bibs recognizing someone in their life impacted by cancer or heart disease.

Visit www.breakawayfromcancer.com (opens in new window) and www.breakawayfromheartdisease.com (opens in new window)  to learn more.

About the Amgen Tour of California

The Amgen Tour of California and the Amgen Tour of California Women's Race empowered with SRAM are Tour de France-style cycling road races created and presented by AEG. Running concurrently, the races challenges the world's top professional cycling teams to compete along demanding courses that traverse hundreds of miles of California's iconic highways, byways and coastlines each spring. The teams chosen to participate have included Olympic medalists, Tour de France contenders and World Champions, and award important, world-ranking points to the top finishers. More information is available at amgentourofcalifornia.com.

About Amgen
Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology.

Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people's lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world's leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.

For more information, visit www.amgen.com and follow us on www.twitter.com/amgen.

About AEG
Headquartered in Los Angeles, California, AEG is the world’s leading sports and live entertainment company. With offices on five continents, AEG operates in the following business segments: AEG Facilities, which is affiliated with or owns, manages or consults with more than 120 preeminent arenas, stadiums, theaters, clubs and convention centers around the world including STAPLES Center, The O2 Arena, the Sprint Center and the Mercedes-Benz Arenas; AEG Presents, which is dedicated to all aspects of live contemporary music performances, including producing and promoting global and regional concert tours, music and special events and world-renowned festivals; AEG Real Estate, which develops world-class venues, as well as major sports and entertainment districts like STAPLES Center and L.A. LIVE; AEG Sports, which is the world’s largest operator of sports franchises and high-profile sporting events; and AEG Global Partnerships, which oversees worldwide sales and servicing of sponsorships including naming rights, premium seating and other strategic partnerships. Through its worldwide network of venues, portfolio of powerful sports and music brands, AXS.com ticketing platform, AXS cable television channel and its integrated entertainment districts, AEG entertains more than 100 million guests annually. More information about AEG can be found at www.aegworldwide.com.

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Media Contacts:

Michael Roth, AEG

Josh Levitt, Canvas Blue