Pivotal Stage Saturday
Previous race leader Michal Kwiatkowski (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) conceded the lead to Daniel Diaz, who was runner-up to solo stage winner Emanuel Guevera (San Luis Somos Todos). Van Garderen arrived in a group of six riders that included last year's Vuelta a España winner Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff) 1:21 after Guevera crossed the line. "We had perfect teamwork today to help Tejay and make tempo and position him for the final climbs," BMC Racing Team Directeur Sportif John Lelangue said. "All the team is riding really strongly around him, particularly today Thor Hushovd and Manuel Quinziato did great work." With only Saturday's 156.6 km mountain-top finish and Sunday's less-decisive 154.7 km stage to come, van Garderen is 17 seconds behind Diaz and 22 seconds ahead of third-placed Alex Diniz (Funvic-Pindamonhangaba). "Saturday's stage is hard – harder than than what we did a few days ago," Lelangue said. "It's pretty steep and is a stage that was won by Contador last year while Diaz was second by only a few meters. We have nothing to lose and want to go for it."