Oakley's Janez Brajkovic Claims Biggest Win Of Career

Cycling : Criterium du Dauphine 2010 / Stage 3

Oakley’s Janez Brajkovic of Slovenia secured the biggest win of his career Sunday, beating Spain’s Alberto Contador at the Criterium Du Dauphine in France.

Brajkovic, who races for Lance Armstrong’s RadioShack team, finished the week-long race with a lead of 1 minute and 41seconds on two-time Tour de France champion Contador.

Astana rider Contador won the opening prologue last Sunday and held the race lead until stage three on Wednesday when Brajkovic triumphed in a 49 kilometer time trial to take the race lead and leave the Spaniard 1:45 in his wake.

Brajkovic defended his lead on the mountain-packed final weekend in the Alpes, especially on Saturday’s stage up the legendary Alpe dHuez. Offering its steepest pitches in the opening kilometers, this 13.8-kilometer climb always disintegrates the pack early-on. Soon enough, Brajkovic found himself alone with Contador, who attacked ceaselessly. With each acceleration, Brajkovic managed to follow.

The 26-year-old’s first major stage race victory comes hot on the heels of an impressive season in which he has claimed several top ten finishes.

A former world time trial winner at Under-23 level who raced with Contador at Astana last year, Brajkovic is hoping his recent achievement will help him secure a place on Radio Shack’s Tour de France team for the July 3-25 race.

Brajkovic said, “Now I hope I will ride the Tour de France, this year or the next one. And one day, I hope I will be a serious contender there.”

Oakley’s Norwegian Edvald Boasson Hagen of Team Sky, won the final stage, a 148 kilometer or 92 mile trek between Allevard-les-Bains and Sallanches, after breaking free of a small leading group on the final of five ascensions of the 2.9 kilometer Domancy climb.

Author

Erin Edwards

Date

June 14, 2010