Women’s and Men’s Races Conclude Tomorrow; Champions Will Be Determined in Sacramento
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. (May 18, 2018) – Egan Bernal, Team Sky’s 21-year-old Colombian rider, may have ceded his King of the Mountains lead to Trek-Segafredo’s Toms Skujins (LAT) in today’s mountainous stage, but he regained the overall Amgen Tour of California race lead with a daring solo uphill finish that pulled him +1.25” ahead of BMC Racing Team’s Tejay van Garderen (Tacoma, Wash.), who now sits second overall going into tomorrow’s Sacramento race finale.
Presented by Visit California, Stage 6 was a 122.1-mile trek from Folsom to South Lake Tahoe with seven categorized climbs that began in short order after the riders departed. Bernal, who won Monday’s mountainous Stage 2 atop Gibraltar Road, attacked on today’s penultimate Daggett Summit climb and continued to put time on overall race leader van Garderen, who had ousted Bernal at Wednesday’s time trial.
“Today was a long day, but I felt so good, and the last long climb the team did a really good job,” said Bernal. “They made a really hard pace….After this climb we were like 10km to ride, so I just kept pushing hard, but I’m happy with the result and I’m happy for the team.”
Bernal had nurtured his solo lead to 1.5 minutes on the chase group with 1km to go to the uphill finish line at Heavenly Mountain Resort. Most of the top-10 GC riders were off the front of the main group on the descent before the final climb, including Michelton-SCOTT’s Adam Yates (GBR), Team Sky’s Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBR) and Rally Cycling’s Brandon McNulty (USA), who took second, third and fourth for the stage respectively, as well as Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale’s Daniel Martinez (COL), who successfully retained third place in the overall standings. van Garderen placed seventh for the stage.
Bernal also won the TAG Heuer Best Young Rider Jersey for the fifth day. The Breakaway from Cancer® Most Courageous Rider Jersey went to Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale’s Lawson Craddock (Austin, Texas).
A pair of California riders, UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling’s Katie Hall (Oakland, Calif.) and Trek-Drops’ Tayler Wiles (Fairfax, Calif.), jumped out of the pack with about 5 miles to go in today's mountainous South Lake Tahoe stage, with Hall ultimately pulling ahead to a solo stage victory, which she also claimed last year on the same stage finish. Having lost the race lead last year to Anna van der Breggen by just one second gained through Sprint points on the final circuit stage in Sacramento, Hall’s goal today was to gain enough time to protect her lead tomorrow on the same course.
“I just wanted to come out and race my bike and give it another good, hard try, and I feel good to come away with a 29 second gap today,” said Hall.
Battling a very steep final kilometer into Heavenly Mountain Resort, Wiles trailed in next over the finish line, with CANYON//SRAM Racing’s Kasia Niewiadoma (POL) in third. The three hold the same positions on the overall leaderboard going into the race conclusion tomorrow, with Hall at 29 seconds over Wiles and 1’07” over Niewiadoma.
Presented by Visit California, Stage 2 (W) was a 67.1-mile climb-centric day in South Lake Tahoe. The day included the 7,740-foot summit of Luther Pass and the grueling HC climb up Kingsbury Grade, a monster of a climb at 8 miles in length, 2,600 feet elevation gain, and an average 6% grade.
Hall’s ride earned her the Lexus Queen of the Mountain Jersey as well as the Visit California Sprint Jersey. Hagens Berman | Supermint Pro Cycling’s Lily Williams (USA) earned the Breakaway from Heart DiseaseTM Most Courageous Rider Jersey for spending a portion of the day in a solo break, and the TAG Heuer Best Young Rider Jersey goes to Rally Cycling’s Sara Poidevin (CAN).
Tomorrow, Sacramento will welcome the Amgen Tour of California for the ninth time as the women’s and men’s events conclude in the shadow of the State Capitol Building. Fans will have reason to cheer all day long with the men rolling across the iconic Tower Bridge for a 90.7-mile trek that concludes with downtown circuits (approx. 10:15 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.). The women will contest 20 laps of the 2.2-mile Capitol circuit downtown (approx. 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.). The race champions and the week's big winners will be recognized in a special ceremony on stage near the finish line immediately following the men’s conclusion.
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 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.
Its title sponsor, Amgen, a biotechnology pioneer since 1980, has grown to be one of the world's leading independent biotechnology companies and has been in a race of its own to develop a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential. Similar to the cyclists who will compete intensely to win during the Amgen Tour of California, Amgen scientists and staff have a level of perseverance, determination and skill that is unmatched in the industry in order to help win the fight for patients worldwide.
“Today’s healthcare options for treating serious illness are more promising than at any other time in our history,” said Laura Hamill, senior vice president, U.S. Business Operations, Amgen. “And, now more than ever, patients living with serious diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease can look to the future with greater hope. Our sponsorship of the Amgen Tour of California gives us a platform to discuss, educate and empower patients to have hope and believe in innovation to live a longer, healthier life.”
For more information, visit www.amgen.com.
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.
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.
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 (opens in new window).
Michael Roth, AEG
Josh Levitt, Canvas Blue