Brett Lancaster Sprints to Fifth in the Treviso DownpourThu 16 May 2013
Brett Lancaster sprinted to fifth in Treviso to cap off another wet day at the Giro d’Italia. The peloton raced in a downpour from start to finish on stage 12 where Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick-Step) took his 100th professional victory. Matt Goss, suffering from a chest cold, did not contest the finish.
“Gossy is a bit under the weather,” explained Assistant Sport Director Julian Dean. “He’s on antibiotics. He’s not feeling his best, but we’re hoping he’ll come right again later in the race. Obviously we’ve seen extreme changes in the weather. When the immune system starts to get down and the weather is inconsistent, riders are more susceptible to these sorts of things.”
While Goss suffers through his illness, his teammates remain motivated to look for their own opportunities and stay healthy to support him in upcoming stages.
“The body is starting to teeter on the edge at this point of a Grand Tour,” noted Dean. “It’s typical to contend with minor colds amongst the team, and we always have allergy problems at this time of year. Beyond that, everyone is feeling good and motivated. We have a few stages picked out coming up yet.”
“Luckily for us, it was a reasonably short stage today,” Dean added. “The rain was incessant the whole day. It was 10°C when we started racing in Longarone and only slightly warmer at the finish. It was important that the riders stay as warm as possible, and they did that. We also gave them an objective to force them to think about the race more instead of the weather.”
With a projected bunch finish in Treviso, ORICA-GreenEDGE decided to focus on the sprint.
“We were playing it by ear with Gossy,” Dean said. “We thought we’d do the sprint for him if he was feeling good, but as the race went on, it became clear he wasn’t up for it. We made the decision to go through the process of preparing for sprint and to give Brett the opportunity.”
“There was a break up the road, and we helped bring the race back together,” added Dean. “Brett ran fifth in the end. It’s good for him and good for the morale of the whole time. It was important for the boys to be able do something today.”
Lancaster rarely has the chance to sprint for himself and can most often be found leading out one of his teammates.
“Brett said he come off the wheel a few places back to open his sprint,” relayed Dean. “He felt he maybe should have started earlier. He was definitely closing down on the guys ahead of him at the finish.”
“For Brett, that was a great ride,” Dean added. “He’s not a pure speedster like Cav or Gossy. Fifth in a Grand Tour sprint is a good result for him.”