American rider David Zabriskie of Garmin-Transitions captures the Leader Jersey on day 3 of the Amgen Tour of California

by laliveinsider on Wed., May 19 at 09:00 AM

May 19, 2010

Defending Champion Levi Leipheimer Takes Second Place in the Stage and Moves Up in General Classification to Third Place Overall

SANTA CRUZ (May 18, 2010) - In a stage that exemplified the beautiful scenery and challenging terrain of California that make the state the perfect setting for a professional cycling race, Stage 3 of the 2010 Amgen Tour of California covered 113.3 miles/182.3 km of scenic California roadways. In an epic battle for the stage win along a picturesque route that began in iconic San Francisco and ended at the famous beach boardwalk in sunny Santa Cruz, David Zabriskie (USA) of Garmin Transitions took the stage win and also secured the overall lead heading into Stage 4 tomorrow.

The picturesque route took the riders south down the California coastline on Highway 1, flanked by the Pacific Ocean on one side and Redwood forests on the other. This coastal stage included three long, but moderate climbs on Tunitas Creek Rd., La Honda Rd. and Bonny Doon Rd. packed with local cycling fans, which was followed by lengthy and fast descents. The sprint to the finish followed W. Cliff Dr. along Monterey Bay to an exhilarating conclusion to Stage 3 at the world famous Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

As the morning fog burned off in San Francisco to reveal blue skies l day, the riders lined up at the start line on The Great Highway and got Stage 3 off to a great start. After a few failed breakaway attempts at the start of the stage, the peloton approached the first sprint in Pacifica, which was taken by Stage 1 winner Mark Cavendish (GBR) of HTC-Columbia, putting him in the lead in the points competition. The first hour of the stage was marked by little attacks, mainly from QuickStep and HTC-Columbia, but the riders weren't able to get anything to stick.

The next sprint in Half Moon bay was taken by Karl Menzies (AUS) of UnitedHealthcare Presented by Maxxis, followed by Alexander Kristoff (NOR) of the BMC Racing Team and Cavendish. As the riders continued on from the sprint a five-man break formed, which included Andy Jacques-Maynes (USA) of BISSELL), Will Routley (CAN) of Jelly Belly Presented by Kenda, Eric Boily (CAN) of SpiderTech Powered by Planet Energy, Davide Frattini (ITA) of Team Type 1 and Ryan Anderson (CAN) of Kelly Benefit Strategies. With fans lining the street shoulder-to-shoulder on the lead up to the first King of the Mountains competition (KOM) on Tunitas Creek Road (Cat. 2 - 1,562 ft.), Frattini took the KOM win, followed by Anderson.

After going through the feed zone, the riders were quickly hit with another climb, Highway 84 (Cat. 3 - 1,427 ft.), which provided identical results to the first KOM - Frattini in first and Anderson is second. After a quick descent, the cyclists faced the third KOM of the day, Pescadero Rd. (Cat. 4 - 1,053 ft.), which, once again, saw Frattini take the KOM, followed by Anderson.

Team RadioShack, with assistance from the Cervélo TestTeam, drove the field for most of the day and eventually swallowed up the break en route to the final climb of the day. With the end of the race drawing near, several teams began to make their move and created a breakaway that consisted of three riders - Levi Leipheimer (USA) of Team RadioShack, Michael Rogers (AUS) of HTC-Columbia and Zabriskie. With just under 20 miles to go on the route to Santa Cruz, the riders faced the largest climb of the day, Bonny Doon/Pine Flat Road (Cat. 2 - 2,135 ft.). After many unsuccessful attempts by several teams to pull the break back, Zabriskie took the stage win in an all out sprint to the finish before thousands of fans at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

\"I've been a runner up, but I've never won a stage here,\" said Zabriskie. \"I've never touched the Amgen Leader Jersey since the Amgen Tour of California started. Just to touch this jersey is quite an honor.\"

In the awards ceremony for Stage 3, Zabriskie took the Amgen Race Leader Jersey; Cavendish claimed the Herbalife Sprint Jersey; and Thomas Rabou (NED) of Team Type 1 took the California Travel & Tourism King of the Mountains (KOM) Jersey. Peter Sagan (SVK) of Liquigas retained the Rabobank Best Young Rider Jersey for the second consecutive day. And for his performance in the main breakaway of the day Routley was awarded Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer® Most Courageous Rider Jersey.

\"Today proved to be another competitive day of racing in the 2010 Amgen Tour of California,\" said Andrew Messick, president of AEG Sports. \"The level of competition was impressive, the views were breathtaking, the crowds were enthusiastic and the stage finish was as good as they come. As we head into Stage 4 tomorrow, the riders are going to continue to face challenging terrain that showcases the beauty of California, and we all are looking forward to seeing how it unfolds.\"

Continuing its partnership for the fifth year, Amgen utilizes the race to raise awareness for the Breakaway from Cancer® initiative.

In honor of cancer survivors everywhere, today Marilyn Luma was recognized and celebrated as the Breakaway from Cancer Champion for her involvement in the group Tutus for Tatas which raises funds for and participates in the annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure event.

Luma led Amgen's Breakaway Mile - a special one-mile walk that crosses the finish line to honor the millions of cancer survivors worldwide. During the event, Luma was joined by approximately 150 community members - cancer survivors, patients, caregivers and advocates - and Amgen's Steve Young, executive director, research, who plays a crucial role in developing innovative medicines to treat cancer and other serious illnesses.

\"When I first heard about receiving this honor, it reminded me of what John F. Kennedy said when asked how he became a war hero,\" explained Luma. \"Kennedy said, 'It wasn't voluntary. They sank my boat.' I didn't willingly choose to be diagnosed with cancer, but rather looked within myself to handle my diagnosis with dignity and grace. Now, I aim to do something each year to help make a difference. It's my humble honor to be part of the Breakaway from Cancer effort.\"

Today's Breakaway Mile was the first of four Breakaway Miles that will take place during the Amgen Tour of California in support of Amgen's national Breakaway from Cancer initiative, which was created in 2005 as a complementary component to its sponsorship of the inaugural race. The Breakaway from Cancer initiative is designed to empower patients by connecting them to education, resources and hope. Modesto, Bakersfield and Thousand Oaks will also host Breakaway Miles.

For access to resources or to learn more, visit www.breakawayfromcancer.com.

STAGE 4 TOMORROW:
Wednesday, May 19 - San Jose to Modesto (121.5 mi/195.5 km)

Start Time: 11 a.m. PT
Estimated Finish Time: 3:30-4 p.m. PT
Satellite Feed Time: 4:50 - 5 p.m. PT
(Coordinates can be found at http://www.amgentourofcalifornia.com/news/media-info.html)

Fans of the Amgen Tour of California may recognize part of Stage 4, sponsored by Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer initiative, from the 2009 race when the cyclists traveled from San Jose to Modesto; however, in 2010, the racers will encounter a longer and more challenging route. Beginning with a climb that is synonymous with cycling and the Amgen Tour of California, the cyclists will head up Sierra Rd. (1,930 ft.) within the first five miles of the stage. This epic climb is destined to be a defining moment in this year's race. After completing the Sierra Rd. climb, the riders will face fast and flat roads full of twists and turns (Calaveras Rd. alone has more than 40 switchbacks) before visiting downtown Livermore for the first time. The peloton will then turn on to the very difficult Mines Rd., where the riders will face nearly 30 miles of a narrow, twisting road, climbing most of the way before a long descent into Patterson. For the second consecutive year, the stage will finish with two circuits in downtown Modesto.

For full results, archived footage, GPS data, course information, race play-by-play and more, please visit the official race website at www.amgentourofcalifornia.com.

In addition to the website, fans can view the race on the daily VERSUS broadcasts. Stage 4 will air live on VERSUS tomorrow at 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET.

About the Amgen Tour of California

The largest cycling event in America, the 2010 Amgen Tour of California is a Tour de France-style cycling road race, presented by AEG, that challenges the world's top professional cycling teams to compete along a demanding course through the state from May 16-23.

About Amgen

Amgen discovers, develops, manufactures and delivers innovative human therapeutics. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen was one of the first companies to realize the new science's promise by bringing safe and effective medicines from lab, to manufacturing plant, to patient. Amgen therapeutics have changed the practice of medicine, helping millions of people around the world in the fight against cancer, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and other serious illnesses. With a broad and deep pipeline of potential new medicines, Amgen remains committed to advancing science to dramatically improve people's lives. To learn more about Amgen's pioneering science and vital medicines, visit www.amgen.com. To learn more about Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer initiative, visit www.breakawayfromcancer.com.

About AEG

AEG is one of the leading sports and entertainment presenters in the world. AEG, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Anschutz Company, owns or controls a collection of companies including facilities such as STAPLES Center, The Home Depot Center, Sprint Center, The O2, NOKIA Theatre L.A. LIVE and NOKIA Theatre Times Square; sports franchises including the Los Angeles Kings (NHL), two Major League Soccer franchises, two hockey franchises operated in Europe, management of privately held shares of the Los Angeles Lakers, the ING Bay to Breakers foot race and the Amgen Tour of California cycling road race; AEG LIVE, the organization's live-entertainment division, is a collection of companies dedicated to all aspects of live contemporary music performance, touring and a variety of programming and multi-media production. For more information, visit AEG today at www.aegworldwide.com.

Media Contacts:

AEG
Michael Roth
310-308-7684
[email protected]

GolinHarris
Nicole Okoneski
805-441-3900
[email protected]


David Zabriskie (USA), General Classification Leader; First Place, Stage 3
Garmin-Transitions

On winning the Amgen Leader Jersey:
\"I've been a runner up, but I've never won a stage here. I've never touched the Amgen Leader Jersey since the Amgen Tour of California started. Just to touch this jersey is quite an honor.\"

\"The Amgen Tour of California is my favorite race on the calendar and I'm very excited to win this jersey.\"

\"It feels great, but there's still a lot of race to go.\"

On today's atmosphere:
\"Coming in to Santa Cruz was beautiful - the sun came out, there was an amazing crowd and I got a surfboard.\"

On today's race:
\"I was able to stay with Levi [Leipheimer] and Michael [Rogers] at the top of the final climb and at the finish we were trying to hold off the chase - it was closing down quite rapidly. The finish was different than last year. I gave it a good acceleration.\"

\"Coming into the race, I was unsure. But the feelings I had today were good. This was the first time I was able to go that deep so far this season. Hopefully I can stay with Levi [Leipheimer] in the climbs to come.\"

Michael Rogers (AUS), Second Place, Stage 3
Team HTC-Columbia

On David Zabriskie:
\"Dave [Zabriskie] doesn't look any stronger than Levi [Leipheimer] or myself. He just got the jump on a tight finish today. The race is far from over yet.\"

Levi Leipheimer (USA), Third Place, Stage 3
Team RadioShack

On today's finish:
\"I screwed up the finish. I knew about this corner, but Dave [Zabriskie] got the jump on us. We drag raced the last corner, but from the last corner to the finish it was too short to do anything.\"

\"Once we got away I was really threatened because they were the two most dangerous guys in the whole race so it doesn't really matter, you know, we're gaining time on everyone else but that's not really what my goal was. And in fact, I ended up losing a little bit of time because of the time limits.\"

\"Well, I didn't win so obviously there were some mistakes made, but it's not like I lost the whole race or anything.\"

On standing beside David Zabriskie and Michael Rogers on the podium today:
\"They are my most dangerous rivals, so I wasn't surprised at all.\"

On the weather and winning third place:
\"Well, it was obviously much better weather today. My legs were good, I was making the pace on the climb, but I was missing the little something to make the big difference.\"

On which stage will be a deciding one:
\"The Time Trial is the most important day, but hopefully by Big Bear, it will be hard to make a difference.\"

Will Routley (CAN), Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer® Most Courageous Rider Jersey Winner
Jelly Belly Presented by Kenda

On racing in Santa Cruz:
\"I spent my winter training here in Santa Cruz. We've spent some time on these roads, so I was comfortable, rolling at a good tempo.\"

On winning the Most Courageous Rider Jersey:
\"As far as getting the jersey, we came here to get aggressive and to be involved every day.\"

Peter Sagan (SVK), Rabobank Best Young Rider Jersey Winner
Liquigas-Doimo

On the season so far:
\"I'm very happy about the way things have gone this season. I didn't expect it but I've had more successes this year than ever before and I hope for more success in the future.\"

On Amgen Tour of California predictions:
\"Tomorrow 's stage won't be as difficult as today's stage. I feel like Team RadioShack will try to control the race. For the final 16 miles, I expect Mark Cavendish to be there and I hope to be there too.\"

\"The race is both long and hard so I don't exactly know what will happen on the rest of the tour. There are many stages left to go so I'm just going to wait and see what happens.\"

On today's jersey win:
\"This win is very important to me. But it's very important for me to gain experience so I can race even better next year.\"

Thomas Rabou (NED), California Travel & Tourism King of the Mountains (KOM) Jersey Winner
Team Type 1

On today's race:
\"Today's objective was to keep the jersey and I was trying to be in the breakaway, but that didn't happen. It was still a good day for us.\"

\"I was a bit sore. I spent a lot of energy yesterday, so today was a hard day for me. I tried to stay in the front line, but I was able to focus on the King of the Mountains jersey.\"

On hearing from his mother, who is battling cancer:
\"My mother e-mailed me - she's very proud and very happy that I dedicated the win to her.\"

Heinrich Haussler (GER)
Cervélo TestTeam

On the crowds:
\"To be honest, the crowds were unbelievable. The race is getting bigger and bigger each year. I was just saying that the crowds are on par with the Tour de France.\"

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