Fourth in stage 3 TTT lifts Yates and Mitchelton-SCOTT at Tour de France

Mon 9 Jul 2018

Mitchelton-SCOTT has ridden a solid team time trial on stage three of the Tour de France to finish in fourth place, nine seconds slower than stage winner BMC Racing.

The performance brings leader Adam Yates back closer to the majority of his rivals following the stage one crash that saw him lose 51seconds. The 25-year-old now sits one-minute behind new yellow jersey of Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing).

Leaving it to the experts:
Setting out with a clear strategy, Mitchelton-SCOTT’s climbers in Adam Yates and Mikel Nieve took a turn each straight off the ramp but then left it up to their teammates for the next 25km.

Powerful specialists Luke Durbridge, Jack Bauer, Michael Hepburn, Damien Howson, Daryl Impey and Mathew Hayman pushed through the middle section before their climbers re-entered the sequence for the climb in the final 10km.

The fastest of starts:
Straight into their formation, Mitchelton-SCOTT got a perfect start and it showed as the Australian outfit crossed the first intermediate check in a time that would hold as the fastest all day. 

But, there was barely a breath in it and Team Sky and BMC Racing crossed shortly after just one seconds slower with Movistar just two seconds a drift. 

It was BMC Racing who had the fastest time of the day at the second intermediate split and they held it to the line to win the stage by four seconds to Team Sky and seven seconds to third placed Quickstep Floors.

General Classification shift:
As expected, the team time trial saw a lot of movement in the general classification ranks. 

Of the favourites, Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) is best placed at three seconds behind the yellow jersey of Van Avermaet, with Bob Jungels (Quickstep) and Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) at seven and 11seconds respectively. 

Rigoberto Uran (EF Drapac) is at 35seconds with Jakob Fulsang (Astana), Richie Porte (BMC Racing), Alexander Valverde and Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Chris Froome (Team Sky) all under a minute adrift.

Yates comes in at one-minute, in 20th overall, overtaking the likes of Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) and Romain Bardet (AG2R) courtesy of today’s TTT.

Adam Yates:
“We had a good time. We have a super strong team here, a lot of big guys and they work pretty good on these flat courses. 

“Me and Mikel (Nieve) sat on for the first part where it was fast, and then towards the end we started pulling a couple of turns to give the boys a bit of recovery. On a course like that, I don’t push a lot of weight, so it’s pretty difficult to contribute but we did the best we could and the time is pretty good.

“You have to (go out aggressively). I’m not sure of the splits but I’m pretty sure the others teams weren’t too far behind us (at the first time check). We set off quick, but so did everyone else. It’s what you have to do.

“We won’t change anything in the coming days. It’s the Tour de France, a lot of guys want to be at the front protecting their leaders, there’s a lot of people on the side of the road and a lot of road furniture. Nothing is going to change, we just have to try to stay out of trouble and hope we get lucky.”

Matt White - Head Sports Director:
“We were always going to gage our rides off BMC and Sky, we put ourselves as one of the favourites with those guys and so far so good. 

“Adam is now back where he needs to be. We knew today would be a day we could gain some time on our some of our rivals and we have done that.”

Tour de France – Stage 3 Results:
1. BMC Racing Team 38:46
2. Team Sky +0:04
3. Quickstep Floors +0:07
4. Mitchelton-SCOTT +0:09

Tour de France: General Classification after stage 3:
1. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing) 9:08:55
2. Tejay Van Garderen (BMC Racing) ST
3. Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) +0:03
20. Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +1:00

Photo courtesy of Getty Images.