Danielson Wins Stage 4 of Tour of Utah for Team Garmin-Sharp-POC
Tom Danielson attacked on the final Powder Mountain climb and soloed towards the finish line supported by many loyal fans along the roads.
BMC Racing Team's Ben Hermans finished second in today's 168.5 kilometer stage, which took the riders from Ogden to Powder Mountain. Hermans crossed the finish line ahead of Chris Horner (Lampre-Merida), both 57 seconds behind the stage winner.
"Today was really a special day. The team has believed in me from day one here and they really turned themselves inside out today. Ben, Alex, Phil, Janier, Gavin, and Thomas each played a critical role in today’s victory," Danielson said after being celebrated on the podium.
"When I arrived on the final climb I knew what I had to do and no one was going to stop me. It’s days like today that make all the suffering and hardships worth it and I am so happy to share today with my best friends who are also my teammates. Winning a stage like that after your teammates gut themselves for you like that, there’s no better feeling in the world. We were under a lot of pressure. We have a young team here and lot of guys who just came here from the Tour de France. The team really stepped up today," Danielson explained.
Second place finisher Hermans said he could not match the accelerations by Danielson and third-place finisher Horner in the final kilometers of the ascent of Powder Mountain. But climbing at his own pace, he remarkably clawed his way back to Horner, then led last year's Vuelta a España winner all the way to the line.
"I rode my own tempo," Hermans commented. "It is at altitude, so you don't want to go over your threshold. So I pulled with Chris as fast as I could to keep the gap as low as a possible." Hermans moved into second overall, one second ahead of Horner. But ambitions of a podium placing are a ways off, says Hermans.
"We will see day-by-day," he said. "This is only the fourth day and we still have three more to go. Tomorrow is normally an easy stage on paper. But the last two stages are really hard and a lot different from today. Today was really steep on one final climb. The other two stages are harder with other climbs. So we will see."