Stage four of Paris-Nice didn't go exactly according to plan for Cervélo TestTeam, but the squad was holding onto hopes of regaining the green jersey.
Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Slipstream) won stage four after a daring breakaway. He held off Alberto Contador (Astana), who attacked late in the race and split apart the peloton.
"We planned to have a rider of our team in the breakaway, either Hayden Roulston or Xavier Florencio," said director sportif JP van Poppel. "After 90 km we had Florencio in the break of the day together with Nicolas Roche (AG2R La Mondiale), Christian Vande Velde, Daniel Moreno (Caisse d'Epargne), Alexandr Kolobnev (Team Saxo Bank), Tony Martin (Columbia-Highroad) and Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis)."
"The maximum gap of the group was two minutes so we were unsure about the break. The peloton just exploded on the last climb."
Heinrich Haussler was the team's top finisher, 41 seconds behind Vande Velde and in 26th place.
"Heinrich Haussler was in the second group and all the boys did a good job today. We have already a stage win, and we want to take the green jersey back."
"A good general classification is no longer possible after the crash of José Angel Gomez Marchante," said van Poppel. "Inigo Cuesta is not healthy but is trying to survive. We want to work on a good day result and put us back in the picture."
After stage four, Haussler is in third place in the points classification with 42 points. Mirco Lorenzetto (Lampre-NGC) leads with 50 points while Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) is in second, also with 42 points.
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of stage four of Paris-Nice.