Second consecutive silver for ORICA-GreenEDGE at TTT world championshipsSun 21 Sep 2014
ORICA-GreenEDGE have won their second consecutive silver medal in the team time trial event at the UCI Road Cycling World Championships in Ponferrada, Spain today.
A strong finish pulled ORICA-GreenEDGE onto the podium but it wasn’t enough to top a dominant BMC Racing who won by over 30seconds.
The six-man ORICA-GreenEDGE outfit, including Brett Lancaster, Damien Howson, Jens Mouris, Luke Durbridge, Michael Hepburn and Svein Tuft, went into the championships with high hopes of a gold medal but settled for silver for the second consecutive year.
“We suffered out there,” Tuft said.
“Second again is not our favourite thing, but we gave everything we had that’s for sure.
“It was definitely a lot tougher than we thought pre-riding the course. The last 10-15km was just a boxing match and it was really hard coming home.”
As the team completed the final stages of the 57.1km course, the weather began to turn, but it didn’t affect the strength of the outfit’s finish.
Sitting fifth fastest at the first intermediate split, ORICA-GreenEDGE put the foot down to move into fourth position at the second and third time checks before one of the strongest finishes of the day moved them onto the second step of the podium.
“The boys rode well, very solid,” sport director Matt White said.
“They lost a little bit too much time at the start and at this level you just can’t lose 20-30seconds.
“We were one of the strongest, if not the strongest team, coming home but the gap was just too much to BMC Racing to bring back.
“For us to win today, all six guys had to be exceptional. We haven’t got any superstars in our team, and the guys were good but not everyone was incredible and you need to be, to be world champions.”
Whilst it wasn’t the team’s objective to start out conservatively, a fast start backfired on some of the other favourites, including reigning champion Omega Pharma – Quickstep who settled for bronze.
“We wanted to be the fastest team early and put pressure on the other teams to push through the second part of the course,” White explained.
“I think a lot of teams had the same idea to go out really really fast and Omega and Sky sort of imploded.
“We soldiered on through and came home as strong as we knew we would but we were too far back to threaten for that gold medal.”