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Adam Yates narrowly misses out on the title by less than a second at Tirreno-Adriatico

Tue 19 Mar 2019

It was heartbreak for Adam Yates as he lost the leader’s jersey by less than a single second to Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) after a brave effort in the final stage time trial at Tirreno-Adriatico.

The Brit began the 10.05km course with a buffer of 25 seconds over his nearest rival, but the advantage proved not to be enough to fend off time trial specialist Roglic, despite reducing the gap between the pair to 26 seconds, down from 36 in 2018.

The final stage result means that Yates finishes the seven-stage race second overall after Mitchelton-SCOTT held the jersey all week, having won the opening team time trial.

One for the specialists

Former race leader Michael Hepburn was the first off the start ramp for Mitchelton-SCOTT and the Australian set the third fastest time as he crossed the line and his time was good enough for ninth on the day.

The TT was the first opportunity for Luke Durbridge to show off his Australian champion’s skinsuit and the 27-year-old set the eighth fastest time across the line, eventually finishing 13th on the stage.

The battle for the overall

All eyes then turned to the top two in the overall classification, with Roglic setting off two minutes ahead of Yates knowing he needed to claw back 25 seconds on the race leader.

The Mitchelton-SCOTT man was seven seconds down on his rival at the first time split and as he passed under the flamme rouge it was clear it was going to be tight at the finish.

But unfortunately it wasn’t enough despite a valiant effort from Yates to fend off Roglic, with the racing ending with a second place overall after four stages in the leader’s jersey.

Adam Yates:
“It was a hard TT, I’ve done this TT many times and I always lose a chunk of time and it was close, but it wasn’t enough, that’s how it goes, that’s bike racing.”

“I did the best I could, I said yesterday that 25 seconds isn’t really enough. But I did a good TT, I’ll have to look back but I think the power was good and I held my position for as long as I could.”

“There wasn’t much more I could do, the strongest man won, but for sure next year I’ll be back and hopefully I can comeback stronger.”

“This is the first big goal of the season, and I got pretty close, next up I’ve got some more big races, I’ve got Catalunya and Basque Country next, so the form is good, the condition is good and a few days to recover now before Catalunya.”

Matt White (Sports Director):
“Adam has done a great time trial to finish off, he’s not a time trial specialists and to only lose that amount of time on some of the best guys in the world, it’s a solid ride.”

“No one likes to lose by that margin, but it is what it is and there’s a lot of positives that we can take from this week.”

“One is obviously the team time trial, the way we won that and beat the best teams in the world there, secondly the way the boys have ridden in support of Adam and the way Adam has ridden as a leader in a race that didn’t suit his characteristics.”

“The team in general have had a great work load this week and it certainly bodes well for what’s coming up, with Milan San-Remo, the first part of the Belgian classics and for Adam and Brent going to Catalunya.”

Tirreno-Adriatico stage seven results:
1.  Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Soudal) 11:23
2. Alberto Bettiol (EF Education First) +0:03
3. Jos van Emden (Team Jumbo-Visma) +0:04
9. Michael Hepburn (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:11

Tirreno-Adriatico General Classifcation:
1. Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) 25:28:00
2. Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:01
3. Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team) +0:30

Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

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