Tour of California: Rohan Dennis wins Folsom time trial

Rohan Dennis gave BMC Racing its first stage win of the Amgen Tour of California this year after several near misses. The Australian champion scorched the 20.3km course in Folsom on stage 6, winning by 17 seconds over US time trial champion Andrew Talansky (Cannondale). Dennis' teammate, Taylor Phinney, set the early fast time and held on for third place, 20 seconds slower.

Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx-Quickstep) put in an impressive performance to hold onto the yellow jersey. The Frenchman finished eighth on the stage, losing 45 seconds to Dennis but distancing himself from former challenger Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo), who lost 1:40 to the race leader. Brent Bookwalter (BMC) held his own, moving into third place over George Bennett (LottoNl-Jumbo), who, like Stetina, had an off-day.

Dennis moved into second overall, 16 seconds from Alaphilippe, while Bookwalter sits 38 seconds adrift.

Neilson Powless (Axeon Hagens Berman), the best young rider, continued to impress with 10th on the stage, keeping the white jersey and fifth on the general classification behind Talansky.

Although Dennis won by a comfortable margin, he said time splits and information he was getting from the team car had him a bit confused out on the course.

"I was little bit worried about halfway," he said of his race. Jurgen Van den Broeck (Katusha), who started before Dennis, flew to the intermediate split and then faded. But Dennis wasn't sure if he had won the day or if Phinney was still in the lead.

"Van den Broeck was 27 seconds up on Taylor, and the car was saying I was 21," Dennis said. "I was confused. [BMC director Valerio Piva] is Italian, and I thought maybe that was the end time, that Van den Broeck was up. I got confused and then he said that he blew the whole way home and Taylor was still the fastest time and Talansky was 20 seconds up. Really, the last 5k I felt like I was tasting metal in my mouth. I was just lactic the whole way. I didn't really know until the last couple hundred metres that I'd actually got the fastest time at that point."

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Talansky didn't suffer from confusion, but he did suffer immensely on the way back after setting the fastest time at the intermediate sprint.

"I race my best time trials by feel," he said. "I don't like to hear time splits. I don't really like anything. They told me I had the best time at the turnaround, and that was obviously motivating. I'm pretty pleased with the ride. I obviously went pretty hard on the way out and suffered and paid for it on the way back. But I think it worked out pretty well."

How it happened

The relatively flat 20.3km out-and-back time trial in Folsom took place on an almost identical course as the time trial stage in the 2014 race. Bradley Wiggins covered the 2014 course in 23:18, but an extra half kilometre and increasing winds throughout the afternoon slowed all of the riders' times this year.

Tinkoff's Oscar Gatto, starting eighth just ahead of Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) and Wiggins, was the first rider to go full gas over the route and put up a mark of 26:54. Wiggins languished 42 seconds slower than Gatto at the first time check, and it was clear that he wouldn't repeat his 2014 win.

Team Sky's Andy Fenn snuck in with the next fastest time, clocking in one second ahead of Gatto, but his time in the hot seat was equally short lived, as Cannondale's Alan Marangoni pipped his time at the line. The game of musical chairs with hot seat continued as Andrew Tennant (Team Wiggins), who started just two riders later, came in with the new best time of 26:23.

Jelly Belly's 22-year-old rider Ben Wolfe was the first to crack 26 minutes, crossing the line in 25:50 to snag the lead from Tennant, whose teammate Owain Doull returned the favour when he crushed the course in 25:21.

World Champion Vasil Kiryienka (Team Sky) was the next f the pre-race favourites to cross the line, living up to his billing with a new best time of 25 minutes even. The powerful rider from Belarus crashed twice during the week, making his effort even more impressive, but it wasn't enough to hold off a highly motivated and flying-fast Phinney, who was the first rider to come in below 25 minutes at 24:36.69.

Phinney looked like he might lose his spot in the hot seat when Giant-Alpecin's Soren Kragh Andersen set a quicker time at the turnaround, but the 21-year-old Dane lost some time on the return trip and missed toppling Phinney by 13 seconds.

From there it was a series of close calls as Phinney time stood, but when the general classification riders hit the course Phinney's time looked vulnerable. Katusha's Jurgen Van den Broeck, the Belgian time trial champion, crossed the intermediate time check 27 seconds faster then Phinney, with Cannondale's Lawson Craddock besting Phinney's halfway mark.

US time trial champion Andrew Talansky tied Van Den Broeck's time at the intermediate sprint as the top 10 in the overall race began to shuffle.
Van den Broeck also faded over the closing Kilometres, crossing the line in 25:06 for fourth at the time.

Talansky managed the pacing on the tricky course better than Van den Broeck, holding onto the advantage he carried at the time check by a mere three seconds at the line to take over the stage lead.

Talanky's lead lasted only until Dennis finished, however, with the Australian champion coming in 17 seconds faster and assuming his familiar place in a time trial hot seat.

Dennis' bid for the overall lead put the pressure in Alaphilippe, who needed to finish in 25:17 to hold onto his yellow jersey. His time of 25:01 bought him another at least another day in yellow. 

Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing Team0:24:16
2Andrew Talansky (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:17
3Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team0:00:20
4Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Giant-Alpecin0:00:33
5Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC Racing Team0:00:43
6Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team Sky0:00:44
7Lawson Craddock (USA) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 6 - Cell 2
8Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx - Quick-Step0:00:45
9Jurgen Van den Broeck (Bel) Team Katusha0:00:49
10Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:00:52
11Samuel Sanchez (Spa) BMC Racing Team0:01:01
12Geoffrey Curran (USA) Axeon Hagens BermanRow 11 - Cell 2
13Robin Carpenter (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:01:03
14Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:01:05
15Patrick Bevin (NZl) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:01:11
16Alexey Vermeulen (USA) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:01:12
17Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky0:01:18
18Ben King (USA) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 17 - Cell 2
19Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie0:01:19
20Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:01:20
21Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx - Quick-Step0:01:21
22Tao Geoghegan-Hart (GBr) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:27
23Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff TeamRow 22 - Cell 2
24Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 23 - Cell 2
25Haimar Zubeldia (Spa) Trek-Segafredo0:01:28
26Markel Irizar (Spa) Trek-SegafredoRow 25 - Cell 2
27Rob Britton (Can) Rally Cycling0:01:30
28Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha0:01:31
29Ben Wolfe (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:01:34
30Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo0:01:37
31Andzs Flaksis (Lat) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:01:40
32Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Team Sky0:01:41
33Andrei Krasilnikau (Blr) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:01:44
34Krists Neilands (Lat) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:46
35Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Dimension Data0:01:48
36Maxime Bouet (Fra) Etixx - Quick-StepRow 35 - Cell 2
37Gregory Daniel (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:51
38George Bennett (NZl) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:01:53
39Michael Gogl (Aut) Tinkoff Team0:02:00
40Taylor Sheldon (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:02:03
41Daniel Eaton (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:02:10
42Andrew Tennant (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:02:12
43Tom Boonen (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step0:02:16
44Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:02:18
45Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Direct Energie0:02:21
46Javier Megias (Spa) Team Novo Nordisk0:02:25
47Peter Stetina (USA) Trek-SegafredoRow 46 - Cell 2
48Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:02:26
49Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:28
50Angus Morton (Aus) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:02:29
51Jonathan Clarke (Aus) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:02:31
52Toms Skujins (Lat) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 51 - Cell 2
53Travis McCabe (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:02:34
54Niccolò Bonifazio (Ita) Trek-Segafredo0:02:37
55Alan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 54 - Cell 2
56Andrew Fenn (GBr) Team SkyRow 55 - Cell 2
57Oscar Gatto (Ita) Tinkoff Team0:02:38
58Nikolay Trusov (Rus) Tinkoff TeamRow 57 - Cell 2
59Jordan Cheyne (Can) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:02:39
60Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Team Sky0:02:42
61Juraj Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff TeamRow 60 - Cell 2
62Xabier Zandio (Spa) Team Sky0:02:46
63Adam Blythe (GBr) Tinkoff Team0:02:49
64Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension Data0:02:50
65Logan Owen (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:55
66Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) BMC Racing Team0:02:57
67William Barta (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:58
68Nathan Haas (Aus) Dimension DataRow 67 - Cell 2
69Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx - Quick-StepRow 68 - Cell 2
70Rob Squire (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:03:00
71Janez Brajkovic (Slo) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:03:01
72Vladimir Isaychev (Rus) Team Katusha0:03:02
73Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo0:03:06
74Joonas Henttala (Fin) Team Novo Nordisk0:03:08
75Michal Kolár (Svk) Tinkoff Team0:03:09
76Charles Planet (Fra) Team Novo Nordisk0:03:10
77Mark Christian (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:03:11
78Michael Mørkøv (Den) Team KatushaRow 77 - Cell 2
79Daniel Patten (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:03:19
80Christopher Jones (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:03:20
81Maarten Wynants (Bel) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:03:23
82John Murphy (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling TeamRow 81 - Cell 2
83John Hornbeck (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:03:24
84Danny Pate (USA) Rally Cycling0:03:26
85Emerson Oronte (USA) Rally Cycling0:03:29
86Sindre Skjøstad Lunke (Nor) Team Giant-Alpecin0:03:31
87Adam de Vos (Can) Rally Cycling0:03:32
88Joseph Lewis (Aus) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:03:34
89Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha0:03:36
90Phillip Gaimon (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:03:37
91John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin0:03:40
92Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:03:41
93Erik Baska (Svk) Tinkoff Team0:03:42
94Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Etixx - Quick-Step0:03:43
95Michael Sheehan (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:03:45
96Julián Arredondo (Col) Trek-SegafredoRow 95 - Cell 2
97Jesse Anthony (USA) Rally CyclingRow 96 - Cell 2
98Angelo Tulik (Fra) Direct Energie0:03:46
99Michael Thompson (GBr) Team WIGGINSRow 98 - Cell 2
100Marco Canola (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling TeamRow 99 - Cell 2
101Martin Velits (Svk) Etixx - Quick-Step0:03:47
102Christopher Williams (Aus) Team Novo Nordisk0:03:50
103Jhonatan Restrepo (Col) Team Katusha0:03:51
104Timo Roosen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:03:52
105Martijn Verschoor (Ned) Team Novo NordiskRow 104 - Cell 2
106David Lozano Riba (Spa) Team Novo Nordisk0:03:54
107Kiel Reijnen (USA) Trek-Segafredo0:03:55
108Antoine Duchesne (Can) Direct EnergieRow 107 - Cell 2
109William Routley (Can) Rally Cycling0:03:59
110Marco Haller (Aut) Team Katusha0:04:03
111Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Team Katusha0:04:05
112Andrea Peron (Ita) Team Novo Nordisk0:04:06
113Nikolas Maes (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step0:04:07
114Jacob Rathe (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:04:08
115Mike Teunissen (Ned) Team LottoNl-JumboRow 114 - Cell 2
116Bryan Coquard (Fra) Direct Energie0:04:09
117Robert Wagner (Ger) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:04:10
118Matthew Brammeier (Irl) Dimension Data0:04:21
119Daniel Jaramillo (Col) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling TeamRow 118 - Cell 2
120Evan Huffman (USA) Rally CyclingRow 119 - Cell 2
121Pierrick Naud (Can) Rally Cycling0:04:25
122Adrien Petit (Fra) Direct Energie0:04:37
123Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:04:39
124Christopher Latham (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:04:40
125Mark Renshaw (Aus) Dimension DataRow 124 - Cell 2
126Mark Cavendish (GBr) Dimension DataRow 125 - Cell 2
127Jake Kelly (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:04:43
128Tyler Farrar (USA) Dimension Data0:04:46
129Wouter Wippert (Ned) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:04:48
130Roy Curvers (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:04:49
131Caleb Fairly (USA) Team Giant-Alpecin0:04:59
132Oscar Clark (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:05:00
133Bryan Nauleau (Fra) Direct Energie0:05:03
134Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:05:11
135Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Dimension Data0:05:20
136Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:05:22
137Dennis van Winden (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:05:29
138Tanner Putt (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:05:30
139Chris Putt (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:06:47
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Points - Finish - Folsom, km.20.3 km
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing Team15pts
2Andrew Talansky (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling12Row 1 - Cell 3
3Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team9Row 2 - Cell 3
4Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Giant-Alpecin7Row 3 - Cell 3
5Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC Racing Team6Row 4 - Cell 3
6Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team Sky5Row 5 - Cell 3
7Lawson Craddock (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling4Row 6 - Cell 3
8Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx - Quick-Step3Row 7 - Cell 3
9Jurgen Van den Broeck (Bel) Team Katusha2Row 8 - Cell 3
10Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman1Row 9 - Cell 3
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Young riders
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Giant-Alpecin0:24:49
2Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:00:19
3Geoffrey Curran (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:00:28
4Owain Doull (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:00:32
5Alexey Vermeulen (USA) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:00:39
6Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky0:00:45
7Tao Geoghegan-Hart (GBr) Axeon Hagens Berman0:00:54
8Ben Wolfe (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:01:01
9Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Team Sky0:01:08
10Krists Neilands (Lat) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:13
11Gregory Daniel (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:18
12Michael Gogl (Aut) Tinkoff Team0:01:27
13Daniel Eaton (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:01:37
14Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:55
15Niccolò Bonifazio (Ita) Trek-Segafredo0:02:04
16Logan Owen (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:22
17William Barta (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:25
18Charles Planet (Fra) Team Novo Nordisk0:02:37
19Sindre Skjøstad Lunke (Nor) Team Giant-Alpecin0:02:58
20Adam de Vos (Can) Rally Cycling0:02:59
21Erik Baska (Svk) Tinkoff Team0:03:09
22Michael Thompson (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:03:13
23Jhonatan Restrepo (Col) Team Katusha0:03:18
24Timo Roosen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:03:19
25Christopher Latham (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:04:07
26Jake Kelly (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:04:10
27Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:04:49
28Chris Putt (USA) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:06:14
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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1BMC Racing Team1:13:51
2Cannondale Pro Cycling Team0:01:09
3Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:17
4Team Sky0:02:40
5Etixx-Quick Step0:02:51
6Holowesko Citadel p/b Hincapie0:03:24
7Trek - Segafredo0:03:30
8Team Katusha0:04:19
9Team Giant-Alpecin0:04:21
11Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:05:03
12Team WIGGINS0:05:25
13Team LottoNl-JumboRow 12 - Cell 2
14Direct Energie0:06:23
15Team Dimension Data0:06:33
17Rally Cycling0:07:22
18Team Novo Nordisk0:07:40
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General classification after stage 6
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx - Quick-Step24:26:46
2Rohan Dennis (Aus) BMC Racing Team0:00:16
3Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC Racing Team0:00:38
4Andrew Talansky (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:47
5Neilson Powless (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:01:08
6Lawson Craddock (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:01:17
7Samuel Sanchez (Spa) BMC Racing TeamRow 6 - Cell 2
8Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:01:24
9George Bennett (NZl) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:01:45
10Jurgen Van den Broeck (Bel) Team Katusha0:01:48
11Rob Britton (Can) Rally Cycling0:01:57
12Haimar Zubeldia (Spa) Trek-Segafredo0:01:58
13Peter Stetina (USA) Trek-Segafredo0:02:02
14Tao Geoghegan-Hart (GBr) Axeon Hagens Berman0:02:55
15Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Axeon Hagens Berman0:03:17
16Javier Megias (Spa) Team Novo Nordisk0:03:19
17Robin Carpenter (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:04:58
18Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Dimension Data0:05:06
19Jonathan Clarke (Aus) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:05:20
20Maxime Bouet (Fra) Etixx - Quick-Step0:05:36
21Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Direct Energie0:05:52
22John Hornbeck (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:05:55
23Rob Squire (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:06:00
24Janez Brajkovic (Slo) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:06:41
25Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo0:06:46
26Alexey Vermeulen (USA) Team LottoNl-Jumbo0:07:33
27Sindre Skjøstad Lunke (Nor) Team Giant-Alpecin0:08:36
28Jhonatan Restrepo (Col) Team Katusha0:09:05
29Angus Morton (Aus) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:09:15
30Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:10:23
31Christopher Jones (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:10:30
32Daniel Jaramillo (Col) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:11:00
33Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team0:11:22
34Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha0:11:44
35Phillip Gaimon (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:12:09
36Travis McCabe (USA) Holowesko-Citadel Racing Team0:13:26
37Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension Data0:14:28
38Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Team Sky0:15:45
39Gregory Daniel (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:16:51
40Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie0:16:53
41Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx - Quick-Step0:17:37
42Jordan Cheyne (Can) Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis0:17:55
43Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Team Sky0:18:25
44Mark Christian (GBr) Team WIGGINS0:19:20
45Michael Gogl (Aut) Tinkoff Team0:19:31
46Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo0:19:34
47Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin0:19:35
48Geoffrey Curran (USA) Axeon Hagens Berman0:19:50
49Daniel Eaton (USA) UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team0:19:56
50Kiel Reijnen (USA) Trek-Segafredo0:20:23
51Angelo Tulik (Fra) Direct Energie0:21:23
52Ben Kin