Remi Cavagna wins Stage 3, Tejay van Garderen keeps Tour of California lead

Remi Cavagna began his post-race remarks by apologizing for his heavily accented English. There were no apologies necessary for his powerful legs.

The Frenchman decimated the peloton with an audacious solo breakaway to win Stage 3 of the Tour of California on Tuesday. He was so far clear of the field — more than seven minutes by the finish in Morgan Hill — that he had toweled off and recovered by the time the rest of the riders crossed the line.

“Today was really hard. It was a long day,” he said, “but we go the maximum we can and I could go on the climb to the end. … I’m really happy.”

So was American Tejay van Garderen, who was able to easily protect the leader’s yellow jersey in part because the peloton was so far behind that nobody was willing to push the tempo. He has a six-second advantage over Gianni Moscon.

“It was really important for the team, for us to win here,” said Cavagna, whose Deceuninck-Quick Step team is sponsored by Specialized, a bike-maker based in Morgan Hill. The win also gave his team back-to-back stage wins after Kasper Asgreen was victorious Monday.

The third stage took riders 129 miles from Stockton, and Cavagna broke away early with 21-year-old Alex Hoehn of the U.S. national team. The two of them quickly built a sizable gap on a peloton that was content to take it easy after a brutal ride Monday to South Lake Tahoe.

The fourth stage on the weeklong road to Pasadena begins at Raceway Laguna Seca and takes riders on a 138-mile ride along the Big Sur coast to Morro Bay.

Elsewhere

Daschbach hits

4 HRs for Stanford

Stanford’s Andrew Daschbach hit four home runs, setting a school record, as the third-ranked Cardinal (38-9) rolled to a 7-1 victory over Cal Poly (24-26) at Sunken Diamond.

Daschbach hit solo shots in the second, fourth and eighth innings and a two-run job in the sixth. The junior first baseman from Sacred Heart Prep has 15 homers this season.

Tennis: Serena Williams withdrew from the Italian Open ahead of her second-round match against sister Venus because of a previously injured left knee.

Serena opened her clay-court season Monday in Rome with a straight-sets win over Swedish qualifier Rebecca Peterson.

Soccer: The last-place New England Revolution hired five-time MLS Cup winner and former U.S. national-team coach Bruce Arena, 67, as its head coach and sports director. Arena succeeds fired coach Brad Friedel and general manager Michael Burns.

Hockey: Kevin Fiala scored his fourth goal of the world championship in Slovakia to help Switzerland beat Austria 4-0 for its third straight win.

Switzerland, last year’s finalist, joined Russia atop Group B in Bratislava with nine points.

WNBA: Seattle Storm head coach Dan Hughes had surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from his digestive tract.

Broadcasting: The Pro Football Hall of Fame will honor Dick Ebersol, the former longtime head of NBC Sports, as the 2019 recipient of the Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Remi-Cavagna-wins-Stage-3-Tejay-van-Garderen-13846125.php.

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