Team Garmin-Barracuda looking at Tom Danielson after David Zabriskie’s dreadful performance during the fifth stage
David Zabriskie started the Le Tour de Langkawi with a terrific start. He succeeded during the opening stage of the race and grabbed the top podium position.
The American continued his grip on the overall classifications for the first four stages but fell short during the 187.2 kilometre stage 5 off the race.
He finished more than 19 minutes behind the race winner Jose Serpa, which ruined his chances of claiming the overall success during the race.
The American enjoyed the yellow jersey for the first four consecutive days but does not have enough legs to continue on the stage 5 chase to Pandan Indah.
Team Garmin-Barracuda’s cyclists gathered to help David but only Raymond Kreder guided him through the finish-line later, when it was evident that the American was not able to recover.
New race leader Darren Lapthorne was shocked on Zabriskie’s performance.
“I’m surprised as I didn’t think Zabriskie would fall back today, I thought he had such a good lead, and also my team-mate Adam Phelan – who was coming second overall – pulled out earlier in the stage,” he noted.
The Australian is now leading the stage 5 classifications with an advantage of 37 seconds over Tom Danielson and 46 seconds over Alexandr Dyachenko.
José Rujano Guillen, Joseph Cooper and Dmitriy Gruzdev are at the fourth, fifth and sixth positions with a deficit of less than one minute over the race leader.
Allan Pieper, the competition Director, is still not sure as to what was the main reason behind David’s poor performance during the fifth stage.
He told Cyclingnews, "We are really not sure what happened to Dave Zabriskie. He had a little fever two nights ago but before yesterday’s stage he seemed okay health-wise. The only other explanation could be some heat stroke or severe dehydration".
The American team is now counting on Tom Danielson as Zabriskie is dropped down to the 115th overall position after the stage 5 classifications.
With five more stages to go, what Tom really needs is the consistency and the determination to grab the overall win at the Malaysian race.