ORICA-SCOTT 5th in opening La Vuelta team time trial in a balance of speed and risk

Sat 19 Aug 2017

ORICA-SCOTT has guided its three leaders to fifth place in the opening team time trial at La Vuelta this evening.

The 13.7km course, held in the centre of the French town of Nimes, was relatively flat but extremely technical, with over 20 corners to negotiate in the 16minute stage. 

The Australia outfit, riding in support of British twins Adam and Simon Yates and Colombian Esteban Chaves, carefully balanced ‘fast’ with ‘conservative’ as the difficult course saw several riders fall victim in crashes. 

“With a course like today, and the racing ahead, we knew it was about balancing speed with risk today,” Adam Yates said. “You want to put in the fastest time possible but you also need to ride conservatively, because as you saw, a few riders had crashes out there today.” 

“So the key was conservative, but not too conservatively so you lost a lot of time. It’s a balance and I think we got that balance right and can be happy with our ride today. 

Finishing in a time of 16minutes 15seconds, ORICA-SCOTT was 17seconds shy of stage winners BMC Racing Team, 11seconds behind Quickstep Floors and Team Sunweb and eight seconds behind race favourite Chris Froome’s Team Sky.

In the scheme of the month of racing, sport director Neil Stephens said the team could be extremely satisfied with the performance.

“Our performance today was far beyond what I could have expected from the team,” Stephens said. “We made a choice and that was to go as fast as we could but without taking a risk and we really nailed it.” 

“To be able to finish 17seconds behind the winners of the race and eight seconds to some of our strong rivals and the best teams in this discipline, is a fantastic result from us.

“There’s one or two riders on the general classification that we’ve lost time on, but there’s a bit lump of guys that we’ve put a bit of time into.

La Vuelta – Stage 1 Results:

1. BMC Racing Team 15:58
2. Quickstep Floors +0:06
3. Team Sunweb +0:06
5. ORICA-SCOTT +0:17

La Vuelta – General Classification after stage 1:

1. Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing Team) 15:58
2. Daniel Oss (BMC Racing Team) ST
3. Nicholas Roche (BMC Racing Team) ST
24. Adam Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) +0:17

Photo courtesy of TDWsport.