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by Shane Stokes
February 3, 2018
BMC Racing wins team time trial at Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana; Sliding in the sand: Sun Tour peloton divided as stage 2 is neutralised; Sarreau wins again on stage 3 of the Etoile de Bessèges; López vying to pay tribute to Scarponi with success in Tour of the Alps; Lobato denies sleeping pill addiction, appeals for contract offers; French amateur given five year suspension for hidden motor use; Teklehaimanot signs for Cofidis; Happy the Eclectus loves his bike; Tour of Britain commentary excerpts and bloopers; Beavis and Butthead do SRAM
With stage three of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana dogged by bad weather and the organisers declaring that the team time trial would not count towards the overall classification, some teams may have opted to back off and play it safe. Not so for the BMC Racing Team, which went full out to win the 23 kilometre test.
The squad dominated to beat the Astana team by one minute and eight seconds, with Ag2r La Mondiale a further four seconds back in third and CCC Sprandi Polkowice plus Gazprom-Rusvelo next home. Stage one winner Alejandro Valverde’s Movistar team was 11th, two minutes and 31 seconds back, but the neutralisation of GC meant that he holds onto the race lead.
“It was a pretty demanding TTT but in the end, we are the best bike riders in the world,” said Stefan Küng. “I think we are able to handle this type of situation. This is also what makes a good bike rider. I am proud of the team. We did a good job, and we showed once again that we really know how to perform in this discipline and we know how to approach it no matter what the conditions are. We said that we didn’t want to take inappropriate risks but that we wanted to go fast and I think that’s what we did. It worked out well, so we are happy.”
The result sees Valverde maintain his four second lead over Thursday’s runner-up Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana Pro Team), with the third rider from the break, Sanchez’ teammate Jakob Fuglsang, a further two seconds back in third.
The next riders are 29 seconds back, putting Valverde into a very strong position heading into Saturday’s queen stage.