Huffman wins from breakaway in Stage 4 of Tour of California

Amos Gonzales
May 18, 2017

"We are extremely excited that Santa Clarita is once again hosting a stage for the Amgen Tour of California", Mayor Cameron Smyth said.

No need to think about that anymore.

Huffman was followed across the line by Rally Cycling teammate Rob Britton in a banner day for the USA -based squad that was granted one of the wild cards to compete in the race.

"I can't believe it", he said. This year's race will include 16 star-studded teams, half of which are US -based. The duo, along with Gavin Mannion, Lennard Hofstede, Mathias LeTurnier and Martin Elmiger, built a lead of up to nine minutes.

World Champion Peter Sagan celebrates his victory in stage three of the Tour of California.

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"A lot of teams were surprised with the breakaway", said Sagan, who won the previous stage along the Pacific Coast on Tuesday. 15 miles into the race, five of the competitors had a five minute and fifty second lead on the rest of the pack, referred to as the peloton. "Nearly impossible. It was impossible".

Rafal Majka of Poland holds a two-second lead over George Bennett of New Zealand in the seven-stage 583-mile race, which began Sunday in Sacramento and ends Saturday in Pasadena. They broke free in the first couple miles and extended their sizeable advantage up the last big climb of the day, a kicker at Balcom Canyon Road. 5 riders tried their luck in the early breakaway but it was never going to amount to much with the big sprint teams of Quickstep and Trek-Segafredo committed to the chase.

There was a worrisome moment for overall contender Andrew Talansky, who punctured with about five miles to go. He was ferried back to the field by Taylor Phinney and did not lose any time. I was maybe a bit too far back but I still managed to get onto the wheel of Sagan through the last corner.

Polish cyclist Rafał Majka has finished 19th in the fourth stage of the Tour of California but remains overall leader in the race.

"Today was a very hard day but I had a great team to support me and my teammate Peter", Majka said. When we had 1:30 with 10km to go, I thought we had good chance, we can do it.

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