Christian Meier Wins Bayern Rundfahrt Polka Dot JerseySun 1 Jun 2014
Christian Meier won the mountains classification at Bayern Rundfahrt. The Canadian moved into the polka dot jersey following stage two and put up a strong defence to keep it until the end of the five day German tour. Meier started the final stage with a two point advantage over Julian Kern (Ag2r La Mondiale) and a three point advantage over Jens Voigt (Trek Factory Racing). By stage end, Meier had banked an additional two points to handily keep the jersey.
“I can’t thank the guys enough for their support,” said Meier. “They all committed, and they were really excited about doing everything they could to help me. I was a little bit nervous because I knew with the points available today, there were a couple guys that could challenge for the jersey, but it helped to know that I had so much support from the team. I’m quite lucky. I didn’t have to do it by myself.”
“Christian is someone that goes into every race working for his teammates,” said Sport Director Dave McPartland. “It’s the nature of the type of rider Christian is and his role in the team. He’s a workhorse for most of the year. When he got into the break on day two and took the polka dot jersey, he offered us the perfect opportunity to do something for him. This team is keen to support all of its riders. Everyone was happy to give 100 percent to be a part of Christian’s accomplishment.”
The fifth stage was an attacking affair from the gun. Meier remained attentive, keeping a particular close eye on Voigt. When the race reached the first King of the Mountain, five riders had a slight advantage on the peloton.
“I knew that Jens was going to try to get points today,” explained Meier. “He had a shot of taking the jersey if he won both KOMs. The first one was quite early after only around 11 kilometres. The first ten kilometres, I followed every single one of Jens Voigt’s attacks – which wasn’t easy.”
“Before the climb, there was a small group up the road,” Meier added. “Daryl [Impey] helped position me off the front of the peloton. I had to attack and bridge across to try to get more points.”
Mission accomplished. Meier made it across to the small front group and managed to scoop up two points. With a new total of 12 KOM points and only one category two climb remaining, it was mathematically impossible for anyone to eclipse Meier’s tally. As long as he finished the race, Meier would win the jersey.
“I knew no one could overtake me after I got those points, so I could relax a little,” said Meier. “It was a pretty hard start to the morning but well worth it.”
Eventually a nine rider break would take shape and dominate the remainder of the early action. Twenty kilometres from the finish, the race was back together. While a few late race attacks kept the closing kilometres exciting, the day ultimately ended in a bunch sprint won by Sam Bennett (NetApp-Endura). Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas won the general classification. Impey retained seventh overall, 1’38 behind Thomas.
“We came to the race looking for a stage win,” said McPartland. “We ticked that goal with Daryl’s win on stage three. We also wanted to see where everyone was at coming back from a break or from injury, and all the guys are exactly where they need to be at this point in the season. The guys that are preparing for the Tour are on track. Sam [Bewley] get through the race without any incidents. In every respect, it was a good week.”