Eric Young catapulted off of the entire Orange & Black train to capture the team’s second stage win at Tour of Utah. Here is what the team’s star sprinter had to say about the win:
“My teammates worked their butts off today. Jesse (Anthony), Tom (Soloday) and Mike (Friedman) worked hard to bring back a dangerous break and set up this sprint. Belkin had the front, and Alex (Candelario) gave me an incredible leadout through the final kilometers. He brought me safely past the dangerous Belkin leadout train and to the front of the race, so I decided, “It’s time to get creative.”
Young’s win was made possible by a team effort and punctuated by team captain and leadout specialist Alex Candelario. Candelario had this to say about the win:
“Teams like Belkin, Lampre, and BMC have big leadout squads here, so we wanted to get past them and give Eric a clean shot at the line. He has been boxed in a bit the last couple chances, so I hit out early and tried to open a gap. It worked perfectly and it was definitely made possible by the team’s efforts today. It feels great to get a win.”
Jonas Carney added his insight to the big victory in Utah:
“From the gun it was windy and the field started splitting. Alex Candelario placed himself in a very strong six man move but Garmin would not let it go over a minute. Once the crosswinds subsided, Alex realized it was a waste of energy and came back to the field with two others to save it all for the leadout. The break was down to three guys.
Eventually three more riders went across on the climb. At this point we realized that Belkin’s sprinter had abandoned. With Lampre’s sprinter being disqualified yesterday for holding onto a car, there weren’t a lot of teams interested in a field sprint. It was going to be up to us and SmartStop.
We put 3 guys on the front after the descent. Friedman, Jesse, and Soladay joined two SmartStop riders and with about 70k to go, they needed to bring back over 5 minutes on a very strong six man move. Unfortunately the SmartStop guys were suffering and with 40k to go it was just our three guys. Somehow they managed to get the gap under 1 minute with about 20k to go before they came apart. The break was caught with less than 3k to go and it was up to Alex Candelario to deliver Eric Young. With 1k to go Alex unleashed his sprint, overtaking the Belkin team. Alex made it to about 500meters, where Eric was able to jump on a Jelly Belly rider briefly, before unleashing his own sprint with 300 meters to go. Nobody was able to come around.
It’s always great to win, but it’s an incredible feeling to have the team earn it like they did today. Everyone rode their hearts out for Eric and it was a true team effort.”