Sagan makes it three in a row in California

Wed, 16 May 01:33:00 2012

Peter Sagan extended his overall lead in the Tour of California when he won the third stage in a sprint finish, completing a rare hat-trick of stage wins in North America's most prestigious cycling event.

2012 CYCLING Tour of California Stage Three Peter Sagan - 0

The Slovakian, who also won the first two stages of the eight-day race, made it a perfect three from three when he surged clear of the pack approaching the finish line to win the 186 kilometre trek from San Jose to Livermore in four hours, 50 minutes and 49 seconds.

"I don't know what to say, it was a surprise to me," said Sagan.

"Today was hotter than yesterday and that's not usually good for me, but today the temperature was right."

For the third day in a row, Australia's Heinrich Haussler crossed the line second. Belgium's Tom Boonen, the 2005 world road race champion, came third to get on to the podium.

A breakaway group of four riders opened up an eight minute lead over the main pack but were caught 25km from the end.

Sagan retained the yellow jersey and stretched his overall lead to 12 seconds from Haussler. American Jeff Louder moved to third, trailing Sagan by 22 seconds with five stages to go in the Golden State.

Last year's race winner, American Chris Horner, finished safely in the middle of the pack for the third straight day. He was in equal 15th place overall among a large group of riders 30 seconds behind Sagan.

Tour of California†: Stage

Despite winning the first three stages, the 22-year-old Sagan said he was not expecting to win the race. Wednesday's fourth stage, a 209 kilometre trip from Sonora to Clovis, is the longest of the tour and is a followed, a day later by a time-trial.

"The race has hard long climbs and for me, I am not good in the time trial," he said.

"I will try my best to get keep the yellow jersey until, but then we will see."

Reuters

Comment 1 - 3 of 3

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  1. Most boring race ever .... so far.

    From neshobeguy, on Wed 16 May 22:24
  2. Well done Sagan.

    From Adam, on Wed 16 May 19:07
  3. Another great win by Sagan. Differnt tactic from stage­ 2 as he held off until the final ten k. Delighted to­ see Roche getting into a good breakaway he looked very­ strong in the climb and looked very aggressive.­ Hopefully that can kickstart his season!

    From Owen, on Wed 16 May 10:07
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