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“I can pursue some smaller stage races like the Tour of California and work with Tejay. We know how each other operates pretty well because we’ve known each other for years. The idea is to go to battle for each other in the race...

Photo: Sirotti






16.02.2014 @ 11:17 Posted by Joseph Doherty

Peter Stetina will ride this year’s Tour de France as a domestique for Tejay van Garderen.


“My goal is to race the Tour with Tejay, that’s what BMC brought me in the team for,” the American told Cycling Weekly.


“I can pursue some smaller stage races like the Tour of California and work with Tejay. We know how each other operates pretty well because we’ve known each other for years. The idea is to go to battle for each other in the races. I have a better connection with Tejay so I think I’ll be racing for him a lot this year.”


Van Garderen was fifth in the 2012 edition and he took home the Young Riders Jersey that year too, but he had a tougher time in 2013, only really showing himself on the Alpe d’Huez stage where he finished 2nd to Christophe Riblon.


Both men should line up together at Paris-Nice, Volta a Catalunya, the Tour of California and either the Dauphine or the Tour de Suisse. 


For Stetina, this season will be the first in his career where he will not ride for Jonathan Vaughters at Garmin-Sharp. 


“I’m happy I took that step. It was the right move at this point in my career and it’s a new motivation for me,” Stetina said.


“It was at difficult at first because I’d been with Garmin for so long and it felt a bit like family. Everything was so comfortable but comfort is a good thing and a bad thing. There’s apprehension because it’s change but as soon as I did the first team camp with BMC it felt like the right thing. It soothed my angst.”


His performance in the Tour de San Luis suggested he had made the right move, where he was second and seventh on the races two tough summit finishes. He puts his progress down to helping Canadian Ryder Hesjedal to win the Giro d’Italia in 2012 and that he will be able to progress further by helping van Garderen at the Tour.


“Christian [Vande Velde] jokes with me and says that day to the Stelvio in the [2012] Giro was the day I grew up and became a man,” Stetina explained. “You learn a lot by helping defend the lead in a Grand Tour, especially when it was a tight fight against Purito [Joaquím Rodríguez]. I hope that if we ever get into that situation at the Tour that I’ll have a little bit of experience to draw on and know how to handle it.”




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