Notable Quotes from Stage 3 of the USA Pro Challenge

Aug 23, 2012

Tom Danielson (USA)
On the last 2k:
“At 2K I didn’t think I was going to win. What was going through my mind? I heard my wife’s voice saying ‘don’t look back!’ All I wanted to do was look back, and I didn’t. So I guess those are words to for young riders to live by – when you want to win, don’t look back.”
On the team plan:
“Today we came up with a plan, but you’ve got to have the legs to do it; our team’s pretty strong, so it was really fun to pull it off. Today I bet no one thought it would work, but we did it. The biggest thing was believing in ourselves as a team. Everybody on the team put their hand in today, and we did it. It doesn’t happen often, so it’s very cool to have the team come together.”
On Dave Zabriskie:
“Today was a lot of fun. Dave Zabriskie pulled like a freight train today. Hats off to Roby (team car driver) for convincing Dave and I to keep going in the valley! Dave did what he does, basically a 70 km time trial after Cottonwood Pass. Dave is a bad, bad man. I owe my victory to him and the team today.”
On his season:
“This is just a bad-ass race, and we’re all happy to be here. Whatever happened last year, that’s then. It’s part of being a bike racer ─ Levi broke his leg last year. Today is a new day, a new bike race, and a new way to win.”
On Independence Pass:
“That was awesome! Since I’m a Colorado guy, there’s a lot of responsibility there. It’s a dream come true. I’ve dreamed about going over Independence Pass. For it to come true the way it did, it’s something I’ll never forget. Honestly, that was my finish line. After Independence Pass, I thought, only 35K to go (laughs). It was such a dream to see fans screaming and running next to me. I wanted to give everyone a high five, but had to keep my hands on the handlebars!”

Christian Vande Velde (USA)
On winning the Exergy Leader Jersey:
“I didn’t even think about that “racing bonus” with the team. It was a bonus to be causing mayhem with the team, and we focused on setting Tom up for the breakaway. I’m incredibly proud of the team and what we did today, and every day. Especially with how aggressive we’ve been. If nothing else, it has been a rewarding and fruitful experience.”
On the breakaway and his team:
“Dave Zabriskie usually doesn’t bring that much enthusiasm. He’s three for three in breakaways! He threw up on himself on the first day. Today up there again, and he buried himself for Tom. I can’t say enough about teammates like that who are so damn strong they are doing the lion’s share. This is a team sport. Without our teammates, there’s no way we’d be here now. When it works out, it’s quite a beautiful thing.”
On Stage 4 expectations:
“It’s been such a hard day of racing, and we are exhausted with these two mountain passes. One way or another, it’s going to be hard. I don’t know who will throw spin in the works.”
On Stage 2 results and the commissaire’s decision:
“It has nothing to do with me. It’s the commissaire’s decision. Sometimes it works in your favor, and sometimes it doesn’t. You could be within spitting distance and lose 12 seconds ─ that’s just part of bike racing. It’s their decision, and I respect that.”

Jim Birrell
Race Director, USA Pro Challenge
On why Christian Vande Velde received the yellow jersey over Tejay van Garderen:
“Today, both Tejay and Christian were tied on overall time, and on points. For the tiebreak, we awarded whoever crossed the finish line first, which is why the jersey switched. Christian came in 10th today, and Tejay in 12th.”