Sunday, August 24, 2014

Goodbye Jens

Goodbye to Jens.  Today was the last race of the great Jens Voigt's career and he went out in typical Jens fashion, by attacking early and staying off the front until late.  5 riders attacked coming out of Boulder and let the pack over Lookout Mountain in golden and down into Denver.  We were camped 175m from the finish and saw Jens lead the group through the finish on the first 4 of the 5 laps, though in the fourth lap the group was mere seconds behind the German.

Meanwhile back in the peloton Garmin-SHARP and UHC decided to drop Elia Vivani on the Lookout Mountain climb to increase the chances for their sprinters Alex Howes and Kiel Rejinen respectively.  not only did they drop Viviani, they dropped literally every member of his Cannondale team and by the time they got past us in Denver the grupetto was 3:30 behind and by their body language were clearly not catching the main group.

On the final lap after Jens was caught BMC took control and tried to set up their sprinter Michael Schar.  At 3K to go, when the times were locked in and Teejay had officially won the race, he came to the front to lead Schar out!  As they went by us at 175m to go Teejay was still on the front and Howes was coming up the inside for Garmin-SHARP but it appeared too little too late for Argyle.  We could see the finish but it turns out I was wrong.  Alex Howes took the win over his best friend Kiel Rejinen in a reverse of Stage 1 in Aspen.  It was Howes' first professional win.  BMC's Schar finished 3rd after the leadout.

After the race we were able to get down close to the podium for the ceremonies.  No surprise that Jens was given Most Aggressive Rider today, but Phil Ligget and Paul Sherwen had a special presentation for Jens.  They brought him back up to the stage and gave him a framed collage of pictures and gave him a chance to address the crowd to say goodbye.  Afterwards we went by the Garmin-SHARP bus where we saw Ben King, Charlie Wegelius, and I got an autograph from Jonathan Vaughters!  I've been wanting to add JV's autograph to my collection since the race started so I was quite pleased.  He was just hanging out on the grassy hill next to the bus, I'm not sure how many people knew who he was, most people seemed to be waiting for Howes or Tommy D.  Or it could be that they all got autographs and such before we got there.

1. Alex Howes - Garmin-SHARP
2. Kiel Rejinen - UHC
3. Michael Schar - BMC

Final Standings:

1. Teejay Van Garderen - BMC
2. Tom Danielson - Garmin-SHARP (1:32)
3. Serghei Tvetcov - Jelly Belly (1:45)

1. Kiel Reijnen - UHC (39)
2. Alex Howes - Garmin-SHARP (31)
2. Danny Summerhill - UHC (23)

1. Ben Jacques-Maynes - Jamis-Hagens (35)
2. Teejay Van Garderen - BMC (27)
3. Jens Voigt - TREK (26)

Young Rider:
1. Clement Chevrier - Bissell
2. Ruben Zepuntke - Bissell (3:30)
3. Tanner Putt - Bissell (25:58)

1. BMC 
2. Garmin-SHARP (1:04)
3. TREK (3:54)

Best Colorado Rider: Teejay VanGarderen - BMC
Most Aggressive Rider: Jens Voigt - BMC

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