Janier Acevedo charged up Beaver Creek mountain to win Stage 4 of the USA Pro Challenge known as the Queen Stage. The peloton traveled 102.9 miles from Steamboat Springs to Beaver Creek, tackling five KOM competitions and one sprint. In a battle to the finish, Janier Acevedo took the stage with Tejay van Garderen earning the Leader Jersey. During the last few miles of the race van Garderen looked to be the stronger of the two however he allowed Janier Acevedo to win the stage as the riders had helped one another break away from the chase.
As the race left Steamboat riders were flying at speeds of around 40 mph, attacks started coming from the get-go. An initial attempt from Tour de France Champions Chris Froome (GBR) of Sky Procycling (2013) and Andy Schleck (LUX) of RadioShack Leopard Trek (2010) was unsuccessful and was reeled back in within a few minutes.
With about 25 miles left to the finish in Beaver Creek, the peloton starting pushing the pace. On a false flat leading into the fourth Nissan KOM competition of the day, Team Garmin-Sharp and BMC Racing Team controlled the front of the peloton, with lots of shuffling going on in the bunch as everyone got into position.
The tough climb up Bachelor Gulch really affected the riders, splitting them up into several groups, shattering the field. On the ascent, Rogers attacked the break, followed by three chasers. As things continued to shake up, Mathias Frank (SUI) of BMC Racing Team, van Garderen, Tom Danielson (USA) of Team Garmin-Sharp and Acevedo, formed the group chasing down Rogers.
As the riders got to the top of Bachelor’s Gulch, Colorado locals were in the lead with Danielson in front followed by van Garderen, two men that have spent plenty of time riding the roads between Bachelor’s Gulch and Beaver Creek Mountain Resort. On the final descent, Acevedo attacked and was challenged by van Garderen, leaving Danielson, and eventually Frank, chasing just a few seconds back.
“The biggest challenge was the bottom of Bachelor Gulch. It was an insanely hard tempo,” said van Garderen.
In true Colorado fashion the rain began to pour a deluge of water on the riders, van Garderen and Acevedo powered through the final climb, lined with eagerly awaiting soaking wet fans, to the finish line in Beaver Creek. Acevedo eventually took the stage, followed by van Garderen and 13 seconds later, Frank.
“I felt very good and confident,” said Acevedo. “I had to go as easy as I could going downhill, taking as little risk possible going around corners. I had a tremendous day today and I felt good about it. For me to win today is just amazing.
Stage 4 Results
- First – Janier Alexis Acevedo (COL) of Jamis-Hagens Berman p/b Sutter Home
- Second – Tejay van Garderen (USA) of BMC Racing Team
- Third – Mathias Frank (SUI) of BMC Racing Team
- First – Tejay van Garderen (USA) of BMC Racing Team
- Second – Mathias Frank (SUI) of BMC Racing Team
- Third – Janier Alexis Acevedo (COL) of Jamis-Hagens Berman p/b Sutter Home
- Smashburger Leader Jersey – Tejay van Garderen (USA) of BMC Racing Team
- Clif Bar Sprint Jersey – Peter Sagan (SVK) of Cannondale Pro Cycling
- Nissan King of the Mountains Jersey – Matt Cooke (USA) of Jamis-Hagens Berman p/b Sutter Home
- FirstBank Most Courageous Rider Jersey – Michael Rogers (AUS) of Team Saxo-Tinkoff
- Colorado State University Best Young Rider Jersey – Lachlan David Morton (AUS) of Team Garmin-Sharp