Q&A With DS Matt Wilson on Dauphiné Stage 7

Sat 8 Jun 2013

Travis Meyer spent his 24th birthday in the breakaway on the queen stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné. Part of a 22 rider move that formed in the opening hour of racing, Meyer worked with his breakmates to build up a maximum advantage of 5’40 over the Col d’Ornon.

Teams Sky and Garmin-Sharp did the bulk of the late chase work that saw the break’s advantage quickly tumble during the final two hours of racing. Forty kilometres from the finish, Meyer and Jurgen Van den Broeck (Lotto-Belisol) enjoyed a slim advantage over the escape group. When the front group came back together, Meyer attacked again.

Although the attacks made for an animated finale, the peloton overtook the break as it shattered inside the last 25 kilometres. Meyer was back in the bunch 21 kilometres from the finish. Nine kilometres later, Alessandro De Marchi (Cannondale), the last man standing, rejoined the field.

Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel Euskadi) beat Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) to the finish line on final ascent to the ski resort of Superdécoluy. The duo were 15” faster than Richie Porte (Sky) who finished with a 1” advantage over a group of six that included race leader Chris Froome (Sky).

Sport Director Matt Wilson answered your questions about stage seven. Read what he had to say about the hilly day of racing below.

Q: Was having a rider in the breakaway planned today?

Yes, we definitely wanted to have a rider in the break. We had no one for this type of finish; no specialists for the climbing stages. Anyone on the team had the opportunity to get in the break and see what they could do. Travis Meyer was the one who managed to get up the road.

Q: Travis has been in the break regularly this year. Why is this his role?

Trav is an opportunist kind of rider. If you’re not a rider with exceptional climbing abilities and you’re not a sprinter, you need to win races from a break. He’s had good form this year. It’s become quite common that we see him going into breaks and then attacking from these moves. We value this sort of racing at ORICA-GreenEDGE

Q: What’s the normal recovery process between stages?

Food, massage and rest are the major focus. Straight after the stage, we make sure the riders take in good food that includes a source of protein and a recovery shake. Back at the hotel, they have massage and sometimes an ice bath. We also use The Recovery Pump system (what some of you have called “our space boots” on Facebook) to aide recovery. The riders sit down for a good meal, either food prepared by our race hotel or our chef Nicki Strobel. After dinner, it’s time for a good night sleep. That’s more or less the drill at every race.

Q: What happened with Fumy Beppu today? Why did he abandon?

Fumy lost contact with the peloton on the first climb, and 40-50 kilometres later, we realised he probably wouldn’t make the time cut. We decided he should call it a day at the point and think about the next race.

Q: Why is Simon Gerrans dropping off on the big climbs this week. Matt Keenan has commentated he’s in ‘training mode’ but I would have thought pushing through would be best for training. Is this to avoid fatigue or for another reason?

It’s to avoid fatigue. When you go into the Tour, you can’t go in tired. Building form is a fairly scientific process. Simon is riding within himself and keeping his heart rate within a certain range. He’s helping the team in various ways while making sure that he arrives in his best possible condition for the Tour.