Phinney, van Garderen lead BMC in Worlds team time trial

Race is “a high priority” for American team

BMC Racing Team will look to make up for its narrow loss to Omega Pharma-Quickstep last year by taking victory in the team time trial at the UCI Road World Championships this coming Sunday in Florence. The US-based team is one of the top favourites for the title, and team manger Jim Ochowicz called the race “a high priority” for the squad.

Taylor Phinney, Tejay van Garderen, and Manuel Quinziato are returning from last year's silver medal team, and will be joined by Steve Cummings, Daniel Oss and Michael Schär. Van Garderen has won two individual time trials this year, and the team won the team time trial at the Tour of Qatar.

The team was unable to bring in top results in the team time trials at the three Grand Tours this year. They were 12th in the Giro d'Italia, 9th at the Tour de France and 8th at the Vuelta a Espana.

“This is a team that we will be proud of, regardless of results," Ochowicz said. "However, we are pretty confident everyone has been properly prepared for the race. This is a high priority for the team and one that we have thought about since getting second last year."

Selecting the final six riders was a difficult task, sport director Max Sciandri said. "It becomes a numbers issue, there is a personal component to it, and even a friendship component,. In the end, making that final selection is like cutting off a little piece of the team and it really hurts. But decisions had to be made."

Both Sciandri and Performance Team Advisor Bobby Julich reconnoitred the course earlier this week before making their final decision. "There's no hiding," Sciandri said. "Speed is going to be a key factor."

The team chose not to take Italian national time trial champion Marco Pinotti, who will ride the individual time trial for Italy.

BMC is one of the favourites for the title, along with defending champion Omega Pharma-QuickStep and Australian-based Orica-GreenEdge.

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