Mannion fourth on Queen Stage of Tour of Utah
SNOWBIRD, Utah – On what could arguably be the most critical stage of this year’s Tour of Utah, Gavin Mannion pulled out all the stops to hold onto his second overall placing on the general classification. The 25-year-old fought tooth and nail with his closest rivals to finish fourth on the stage, 44 seconds behind winner Guilio Ciccone (Bardiani CSF).
McCabe remains in Utah Sports Commission sprint jersey
Ciccone’s attack with five km left on the HC climb up to Snowbird Resort left the GC contenders eyeing each other’s next move. After an attack by the best young rider, Neilson Powless (Axeon Hagens Berman), it was Mannion’s turn to crank up the pace in an attempt to put some time in between him and Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly), who is sitting third overall and a just handful of seconds behind Mannion.
Mannion’s efforts on the 98km mountain stage, featuring 7,700 feet of climbing, will keep him in second overall, 26 seconds behind Rob Britton (Rally) heading into the final day of the race.
“It was a war of attrition all day,” Mannion said. “Before the start, (team director) Seba Alexandre and I decided that the best plan of attack was to wait until the final few kilometres to put the pressure on my nearest competitors on GC. I felt very good today and am so pleased to have been able to perform for the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling team, who were responsible for keeping me protected all day on a difficult and hot day.”
Travis McCabe remains in the Utah Sports Commission best sprinter jersey, nine points ahead of second place, Marco Canola (Nippo-Vini Fantini). Tomorrow’s stage in Salt Lake City has three opportunities for sprint points, two intermediates and the finish – which will have the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling team on high alert to be sure McCabe is in position to defend his lead.