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2013 Tour of California Favorites

This year’s course is one of the hardest ever, but with the last two winners injured or elsewhere, the Tour of California could go to any of these contenders.—Joe Lindsey
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Tejay van Garderen (BMC)

The conventional wisdom is that the 2013 Tour of California is van Garderen’s race to lose. He’s the premier GC contender here, he’s backed by a powerhouse team, and he’s had an exceptional spring, with podium finishes in two important stage races—Tour de San Luis and Criterium International. The challenges: van Garderen trained at home for much of April as he and his wife, Jessica, welcomed the birth of their first child, daughter Rylan. In addition to nighttime feedings, van Garderen’s schedule was broken by the four feet of snow that fell in his hometown of Boulder, Colorado, in April. And, there’s pressure: van Garderen is expected by many to win, and needs a strong result to stay on track for dual team leadership at the Tour de France with Cadel Evans, who’s currently putting in a very strong Giro d’Italia.

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