Seventh & Eighth overall for Mitchelton-SCOTT at Coppi e Bartali.Sun 25 Mar 2018
Despite numerous setbacks at Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bratali, Mitchelton-SCOTT have concluded the race with an impressive performance by neo-pro Lucas Hamilton in seventh overall followed closely by teammate Chris Juul Jensen in eighth.
The four-day race didn’t start well for the Australian outfit, suffering numerous mechanicals in the opening team-trial, yet still finishing third before Hamilton climbed into the top ten with a strong ride in stage two.
An aggressive performance on stage three followed, with Michael Albasini and Sam Bewley leading from the front and driving the bunch for Mitchelton-SCOTT resulting in splits a GC shake up as Hamilton moved up to 4th overall and Juul Jensen now close behind in 6th.
However, misfortune was to strike again on the final stage time trial when Hamilton inadvertently hit a cat at speed and crashed, needing a bike change and losing valuable time on stage winner Jan Tratnik (CCC-Sprandi-Polkowice) and race winner Diego Rosa (Team-Sky).
Times to Beat:
Riders were rolling out at two-minute intervals throughout the day with the early benchmark set by Tratnik completing the 12.5kilometre course in 19minutes 22seconds.
The route started out flat then rose steadily towards the climb up to the finish in Montegibbio and was anything but easy, no one got near to Tratnik’s time with Hamilton crossing the line in 21:01” and Juul Jensen slightly quicker in 20:42”.
Tratnik won the stage convincingly with Rosa closest to him by 30seconds and enough to secure the overall win for the Team-Sky man.
Lucas Hamilton – 7th GC:
“All in all, I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out, considering the bad luck we had it could have potentially been a lot worse. Something like that has never happened to me in a TT before and by the time we got through the bike change I’d lost time on the other guys."
“I felt good though and by the time I got to the climb towards the finish I had found some good rhythm and it’s a shame I couldn’t pull enough back to finish higher.
“The team have been really great throughout, the morale never dropped even though lots of things went wrong and every day we were riding stronger. It’s a good result to come away with against some big name riders like and I’ll be looking to carry some of this form into my next race at Pais Vasco.”
Sport director Gene Bates:
“I didn’t think It was possible to have as much bad luck in two time-trials as we have had in this race. It’s a real shame for Lucas, because he had been going really well until he hit a cat at 55kph, fell, got back up again and then needed a bike change and by that point had lost too much time to recover.”
“Thankfully neither Lucas nor the cat were harmed, but it’s been such a mature performance from him over the last four-days that he deserved more from the race. We were in a great position going into today’s last stage and that better reflects our performance overall than today’s result.
“The signs are good from all the guys who made it through especially Lucas, who gave a great account of himself against some big riders. He was climbing with the best on stage two and the appearance will stand him in good stead for his next races.”
Coppi e Bartali stage four (ITT) results:
1. Jan Tratnik (CCC-Sprandi-Polkowice) 00:19:22
2. Diego Rosa (Team-Sky) +0:28
3. Victor de la Parte (Movistar) +0:32
33. Chris Juul Jensen (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +1:20
Final general classification:
1. Diego Rosa (Team-Sky) 10:12:36
2. Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) +0:20
3. Richard Carapaz (Movistar) +1:03
7. Lucas Hamilton (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) +1:58