Dave Zabriskie Wins Stage 5 of Tour of Missouri
Time trials to stage win and overall tour lead.
Team Garmin-Slipstream doubled-up on its wins today, with the U.S. national time trial champion David Zabriskie putting in a stellar performance on home soil to win the Tour of Missouri time trial. Garmin-Slipstream's Ryder Hesjedal won stage 12 of the Vuelta a Espana earlier today. Zabriskie also moved into the overall lead and put significant time into all his challengers, beating Gustav Erik Larsson (Team Saxo Bank) by thirty seconds and Marco Pinotti (Team Columbia-HTC) by 45 secs. Levi Leipheimer (Team Astana) disappointingly finished 01:09 behind Zabriskie.
"I looked at the first 3k and the last 3k (in preparation). The rest was pretty straightforward and not too technical," Zabriskie said after his win and added that "I think the team is very strong and we'll be able to do it (in Kansas City)."
“You have to play it heads up to make sure big groups don’t go away,” Zabriskie commented about his strategy for the first three days. But it had come down to the time trial. I know I put some good time into them [today] and that will help in the next few days.”
Zabriskie said that the course, a relatively flat but windy out-and-back from the Missouri State Fair Grounds, was one where measuring effort was key.
“A lot of it is just being aero and trying to feel the speed — on the way out it was not too difficult so that when it does get hard you have a reserve. I only looked at the first three and last three kilometers, those were the only ones that had turns and were really technical.”
When asked what is in store for the final two days of the race, Zabriskie was confident. “I think the team is very strong and we will be able to defend it.”
Zabriskie was also asked about his attack in the finishing circuits of Wednesday’s stage — was he going for the win or just trying to stay on the front?
“It was more to stay safe but it would be nice to win the race. As soon as I did it there was a pile-up so it turned out it was a good move!”
Zabriskie is now the overall leader, a title his teammate Christian Vande Velde was expected to hold, until he was forced to abandon the race with a fractured hand. When asked if it would have been difficult racing against a teammate in the time trial, Zabriskie said it is all about the team.
“It wouldn’t have been a battle, it would have come down to this day — if he'd won I would have worked for him and if I won I’m sure he would have worked for me too.”
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