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Tour of California 2012 Teams: Team BMC Eyes The Big Prize

BMC is one of the better funded and better organized teams in the 2012 Amgen Tour of California. But when you're a team with a budget big enough to simultaneously race the Giro d'Italia on one continent and the ToC on another, you bring expectations to match. Tejay van Garderen, an American from Tacoma, Washington, is expected to be the team's contender for the overall victory. Winner of the Best Young Rider white jersey in the 2011 Toc, van Garderen has shown good form so far this year, coming in fifth at Paris-Nice. He'll have strong support: George Hincapie rides for BMC, and Hincapie holds the distinction of being the only rider to assist Lance Armstrong in all seven of his Tour de France victories. In his 19th season as a professional, cyclists don't get wiser or more experienced than Hincapie, and that's a huge advantage in a bike race. BMC's Greg Van Avermaet will be looking for wins in sprint stages, but if van Garderen has a shot at the overall win, expect the young Belgian's sprint dreams to be a secondary concern.

The full BMC Racing roster for the 2012 Amgen Tour of California:

Brent Bookwalter (USA)

Stephen Cummings (Great Britain)

Yannick Eijssen (Belgium)

George Hincapie (USA)

Steve Morabito (Switzerland)

Thimothy Roe (Australia)

Greg van Avermaet (Belgium)

Tejay van Garderen (USA)

The 2012 Tour of California is unique in that there is no clear favorite going in. It's a big opportunity for BMC, and don't expect them to sleep on it.