ORICA-GreenEDGE rounded out the podium at the team time trial at the Road World Championships on Sunday. The six-man squad covered the 53.2 kilometer course in 1:04:07. The Australian outfit claimed the bronze medal with an average speed of 50.25 kilometers per hour.
“The boys were happy to earn a medal, but we came here to win,” said Sports Director Matt White. “We weren’t good enough to take the win on the day. We gave it everything and executed our plan well, but two teams went faster.”
At the first time split, ORICA-GreenEDGE remained within striking distance of the race win. Gradually, the gap between the top times widened. At the finish, Omega Pharma-Quickstep had put 47 seconds into the bronze medalists. BMC took silver three seconds behind the victors.
“We needed to increase our general speed through the middle section,” noted White. “There’s not much else we did wrong. It was little details here and there that add up. Technique wise, I’m happy with how the guys rode.”
ORICA-GreenEDGE crossed the line with four riders, the fourth of whom determines the team’s time.
“We knew Sam Bewley had limited preparation coming off the track,” explained White. “His job was to give 100% in the first 35 kilometers, and he did well with that. Jens Mouris is the biggest guy in the WorldTour, so we weren’t counting on him getting over the Cauberg with the group. Our time trial specialists -- Svein Tuft, Luke Durbridge and Cameron Meyer – gave huge turns towards the finish, and Sebastian Langeveld gave everything he could to match their efforts.”
White is pleased to see the team time trial return to the Road World Championships.
“It’s a great event,” he said. “We haven’t seen it at the World Championships for 18 years, and it was only ever raced by nations. It was a good choice to bring back the event and showcase this particular discipline. We’re proud to come away with a bronze medal in the inaugural trade team event.”