Race: Amgen Tour of California, Stage 7
Start/Finish: Santa Clarita / Pasadena, CA, USA
Distance: 127.5 kilometers
Pasadena, California – Team Novo Nordisk’s Andrea Peron sprinted to eighth place on the final stage of the Amgen Tour of California. The top 10 is the world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team’s best result at a World Tour event in its seven-year history.
The race concluded with a shortish 126 km stage that started in Santa Clarita and finished in Pasadena and despite including only one categorized climb the peloton still had to overcome plenty of climbing. The hard profile discarded several of the pure sprinters who were hoping to contest the stage win and as the peloton entered the final circuit in Pasadena the last remaining survivors of the eleven-man breakaway were swiftly caught.
Team Novo Nordisk put in an impressive team effort to keep Andrea Peron protected all day and as the race entered the last lap the team committed to place our Italian rider in the best position heading into the final sprint.
Peron expertly navigated a chaotic finish, avoiding a crash that took place within the final stretch and surged to an eight place on the line capping off a stellar team work. Having worked diligently to launch his teammate, Hungarian Peter Kusztor, still managed to take a solid 18th place on the day, a result that enabled him to secure his 38th position in the General Classification – the best placed TNN rider in the Overall ranking.
Cees Bol (Team Sunweb) won the final stage ahead of former World Champion Peter Sagan (Bora – hansgrohe) while Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) finished safely in the peloton and won the General Classification.
All the six remaining Team Novo Nordisk riders concluded the final stage allowing the world’s first all-diabetes cycling team to take the 14th position in the Teams Classification, ahead of three World Tour teams, showing strength in depth.
“Yesterday I saved my legs and today I felt really good. I was able to stay with the main group on the climb. The finish was crazy, a lot of turns and I believe there was even a crash in the last meters. I took the last corner in the wheel of (Peter) Sagan and tried to do my best. When we came into the final laps my teammates were fantastic. They were really focused on me and helped me a lot. They wanted a top result as much as me. It was a really big target for the team to do a top 10 in the World Tour and I’m happy I could achieve it.”
Team Novo Nordisk GM Vassili Davidenko:
”The Tour of California is over and it was a great race for us. On Stage 1 we got a jersey with Charles (Planet) who was amazing. Today in the final stage we got an 8th place. It was a successful race for us overall and we are already thinking about the next targets and the next races. It’s nice to leave California on a high note and finish with a Top10 with Andrea Peron. All the guys did an amazing job and we are so proud of our team, they went way above expectations. Thank you team, thank you California and hope we come back next year!”
1st Cees Bol (Team Sunweb): 2:53:16
2nd Peter Sagan (BORA – hansgrohe): ”
3rd Jasper Philipsen (UAE-Team Emirates): ”
8th: Andrea Peron: “