The American rode into the red leader's jersey after putting in an impressive time on the 21km time trial course

Tejay van Garderen (BMC) took the lead in the 2016 Ruta del Sol ahead of Sunday’s final stage, after winning the individual time trial on stage four ahead of Wilco Kelderman (LottoNL-Jumbo).

The American set off 24th from last on the 21km course in Alhaurín de la Torre and it quickly became apparent that the pace he was setting would be the time to beat.

He eventually rolled across the finish line of the undulating course with a time of 27-05, but had to wait for a number of GC hopefuls, including Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and Wout Poels (Team Sky) to take to the course.

Neither of those two were able to do anything about Van Garderen moving up the standings though, as they finished 27 and 20 seconds down respectively, damaging their hopes of making losses back on the final stage’s summit finish.

Dutchman Kelderman came closest to deposing Van Garderen from top spot, narrowly missing out on the win by two seconds.

The biggest disappointment of the day came from time trial world champion Vasil Kiryienka (Team Sky), who was unable to get close to the podium in his specialist discipline, finishing 40 seconds of the pace. His teammate Ben Swift, who lead the race after Friday’s third stage, was also unable to hold on to his lead as he finished way down the rankings.

Van Garderen’s win though, sets things up nicely for the fifth and final stage on Sunday, which will see the riders traverse five categorised climbs on a 164.2km route, including a huge summit finish to Alto Peñas Blancas.

Result

Ruta del Sol 2016 stage four, Alhaurín de la Torre – Alhaurín de la Torre (21km), ITT:

1. Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC, in 27-05
2. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, at 2 secs
3. Jerome Coppel (Fra) IAM Cycling, at 7 secs
4. Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC, at 15 secs
5. Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie, at 17 secs
6. Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, at 20 secs
7. Samuel Sanchez (Esp) BMC, at 21 secs
8. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, at 22 secs
9. Javier Moreno (Esp) Movistar, at 24 secs
10. Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Giant-Alpecin, at 34 secs

Tejay Van Garderen wins stage 4 of the 2016 Ruta del Sol

Tejay Van Garderen wins stage 4 of the 2016 Ruta del Sol

General Classification

1. Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC, in 12-53-57
2. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, at 2 secs
3. Jerome Coppel (Fra) IAM Cycling, at 7 secs
4. Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC, at 15 secs
5. Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie, at 17 secs
6. Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, at 20 secs
7. Samuel Sanchez (Esp) BMC, at 21 secs
8. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, at 22 secs
9. Javier Moreno (Esp) Movistar, at 24 secs
10. Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Giant-Alpecin, at 34 secs