The Amgen Tour of California kept the best for last as a thrilling final stage saw Peter Sagan win the necessary bonus seconds to win the race overall. Mark Cavendish (Etixx-Quickstep) won the final stage with Wouter Wippert (Drapac) 2nd and Sagan in the all-important 3rd place.
It was our very own Tyler Farrar who would push Sagan all the way to the line as the MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung sprinter came from a good few places back to lunge for the line at high speed. It would go to the photo to eventually determine the final podium place.
With only 2 seconds separating the top 2 GC riders at the beginning of the stage, we always knew it would be flat out from the gun. Etixx would put two riders in the early 5 rider break, our South African champ Jacques Janse van Rensburg was also part of this move, in order to try mop up the seconds at the mid stage bonus sprint. Tinkoff would chase the break down though and Sagan clawed back a second.
4 riders would then go clear after the sprint prime but with a number of sprinters teams interested in the stage win, MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung included, they were never going to stay away. Daniel Teklehaimanot helped keep the tempo high while the rest of the team rode to position Tyler for the finish. In the end it was a fast finish that had Tyler just beaten by a tyre’s width, enough of a margin for Sagan to win the overall by 3 seconds from Julien Alaphillipe (Etixx-Quickstep).
Tyler Farrar – Rider
I must say I am a little frustrated with the finish but at least we were right in the mix and it was still our best result of the race. It would have been great to be on the podium though. We did a good job during the race as a whole. The team was active in the breaks and we were trying our hand in all of the sprints. The performance we put in this week is certainly one we can build on in the future. It was good to be racing in the United States with MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung, people showed that they are excited about the team and what the team stands for.