Columbia happy with California report card

Mark Cavendish's stage wins and Michael Rogers' final podium placing were the highlights of what was...

Mark Cavendish's stage wins and Michael Rogers' final podium placing were the highlights of what was a successful Tour of California for Team Columbia-Highroad. Team boss Bob Stapleton explained that his highlight not only comes from the results garnered by Cavendish and Rogers, but by the way these were achieved.

"One thing that is different is that we are truly a team. Everyone is committed to working hard to get results," said Stapleton. "The guys that make up this team are essential to helping set this team apart.

"The team isn't built around one star, it's built around everyone," he added. "The athletes work really well together, which helps them succeed together."

Rogers' comments on the team's efforts reflected those by Stapleton. "Whether it's a race in Europe or the Tour de France, they all are important to us. We just try to go in as a team that's balanced and strong," he said.

This was the case during the past week, with the likes of Mark Renshaw, Michael Barry, George Hincapie and Adam Hansen keeping their leaders in the mix and ready to take the win or stay high on general classification.

In addition too his stage victories, Cavendish claimed the Tour's green sprinter's jersey. "We knew it was going to be tough to keep the sprint jersey, but everyone on my team worked so hard," said Cavendish.

After a week of tough conditions and fast racing, Stapleton, Rogers and Cavendish all believe the event had a Grand Tour feel about it. "I'm stoked to have finished third overall in this race. The calibre of the field is pretty much like the Tour de France; there are only a few teams missing. Everyone is here," said Rogers.

"This race was extremely hard. Physically and mentally, I feel like I've done a Grand Tour," Cavendish added.

Back to top