CAVENDISH SPRINTS TO VICTORY AT AMGEN TOUR OF CALIFORNIA
May 17, 2010
At the end of the 170km opening stage of the Amgen Tour of California, HTC-Columbia led their sprinter Mark Cavendish to victory with a perfect lead out around the streets of downtown Sacramento.
"I'm really happy," said Cavendish after the stage. "I thought it was going to be a bunch sprint and the team controlled it perfectly. When you've got eight guys giving 100% and all trusting each other it just works. Only one guy crossed with their hands in the air but it's a team effort.
"The beginning was quite hard when the attack was trying to go but after that the team controlled it all day to keep the gap down. A couple of teams helped us along the way and then we took over. We've got the best team in the world for leading out a sprint and we know not to take over too early or too late.
"I trust Mark Renshaw's wheel, he trusts Bernie Eisel's wheel, Bernie trusts Tony Martin's wheel and it just goes like that. I'm the one who crosses the line first but all the guys in front of me deliver me perfectly.
"California is always a really nice place to race. The people are always enthusiastic and come out to support the race and especially now that the race is in May and the weather is great.
We are a Californian team and we have American sponsors and it's an important thing for us to do well here. Hopefully we can get a couple more sprints but the pressure's off a bit now and we would really like to go for GC. Mick Rogers is in the form of his life so I can hope that I can also contribute to that goal too."