Sepp Kuss climbed a spot in the general classification standings Friday at the Tour of Utah. His biggest climb of the week awaits Saturday.
The 22-year-old from Durango finished 14th on the fifth stage of the seven-stage UCI event Friday. He finished the 115 miles with 4,200 feet of elevation gain in 4 hours, 5 minutes, 26 seconds, the same time as stage winner Travis McCabe of UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team. Marco Canola of Nippo-Vini Fantini was second, and Logan Owen of the Axeon Hagens Berman team was third.
BMC Racing’s Brent Bookwalter finished fifth on the stage, and overall leader Robert Britton, Kuss’ Rally Cycling teammate, finished seventh to hold onto the yellow jersey for a third consecutive day.
Britton has a 26-second lead on Gavin Mannion of UnitedHealthcare team and a 28-second advantage on third-place Serghei Tvetcov of Jelly Belly P/B/ Maxxis team.
Saturday’s Stage 6 is a relatively short stage but boasts the most elevation gain of any stage on the Tour of Utah. In 61 miles from Heber Valley, there will be 7,700 feet of climbing to the finish at Snowbird Resort.
Riders will face the Alpine Loop, a Category 1 climb alongside Sundance Resort. It will pass through American Fork Canyon and Timpanogos Cave National Monument before the final climb up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Snowbird.
Sunday’s Stage 7 will see 5,450 feet of elevation gain across 73 miles around Salt Lake City. It is a true circuit stage, with 11 laps. Riders will face a long climb up State Street as the predominate climb.
Kuss held the yellow jersey as the overall leader in Utah after Tuesday’s Stage 2. He lost the jersey, his first career yellow, the next day in the time trial up Big Cottonwood Canyon.
The son of Dolph and Sabina Kuss finished 28th this year at the Tour of California, and his run in the top 10 in Utah is a standout performance for the recent graduate of the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Rally Cycling cut the BMC Racing Team’s overall team lead to 16 seconds Friday, shaving 10 seconds off the previous deficit. The UnitedHealthcare team is 2:23 behind BMC Racing.