Team Sky's Bradley Wiggins travelled stateside to win the Tour of California. The Stage 2 time trial win in Folsom on Monday pushed him into the race lead and he's going to rely on his teammates to bring him into Thousand Oaks with the overall victory on Sunday.
"I'm in a good position now and I knew I was good coming into this race," said Wiggins, who is leading the race by 44 seconds ahead of Garmin-Sharp's Rohan Dennis and an additional eight seconds to Taylor Phinney (BMC Racing).
"You can never count out the other people in the group," he added. "We're going to take it one day at a time. You're nothing without your team. It's going to be a long week for our boys."
There's still a lot of racing left with another six stages that include two mountaintop finishes. The first summit finish is at the end of a challenging third stage atop Mount Diablo on Tuesday. The second is at the end of the sixth stage on Mount High North on Friday.
"It's going to be a tough day tomorrow," Wiggins said. "It's all on our team to do the best job that we can do to put me in position to be able to finish it off on the climb. I'm going to take it one day at a time."
There are a number of accomplished climbers sitting behind Wiggins in the overall classification who will be looking to do well on Mount Diablo including Dennis and Janier Acevedo (Garmin-Sharp), BMC Racing's Peter Stetina, Tiago Machado (NetApp-Endura), Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEdge), Chad Haga and Lawson Craddock (Giant-Shimano), Matthew Busche (Trek Factory Racing) and Daniel Jaramillo (Jamis-Hagens Berman).
"You can never underestimate anyone," Wiggins said. "We're all back to scratch now and we'll give it everything tomorrow. It's going to be really hot tomorrow and everyone is going to have to contend with that. We've had two tough days. Yesterday [Stage 1] looked straight forward on paper but it turned out to be quiet a tough day. It's tough for everyone but we just have to keep pushing on."
The peloton has endured warm temperatures through the first two stages, which are expected to continue to increase to high 90s Fahrenheit over the next three days. "I'm going to keep drinking," Wiggins said. "That's all you can do. We've been here for a couple of weeks, so we've gotten used to the heat now but it doesn't make it any easier because it's going to be a tough day tomorrow. There's only so much your body can take."