Orica-GreenEdge Wins Giro TTT
Orica-GreenEdge has drawn first blood at the Giro d’Italia. The Australian squad won Stage 1, a flat, 17.6-km team time trial from San Lorenzo Al Mare to San Remo, in 19:26. Tinkoff-Saxo Bank finished second at 0:07, and Astana took third at 0:13. Simon Gerrans (Orica-GreenEdge) is the 2015 Giro’s first maglia rosa.
Lampre-Merida, the first starter, posted a time of 20:25. Astana set the early standard with a 19:39. Astana was in the lead for a long time, and Sky and Etixx-Quick Step fell short of the Kazakh squad’s mark with a 19:53 and a 19:45, respectively. Movistar was 0:21 slower than Astana, and IAM Cycling was 0:25 slower. Katusha finished 0:27 behind Astana.
Orica-GreenEdge toppled Astana from the top of the leaderboard with Its 19:26 and then waited for the remaining teams to finish. Tinkoff-Saxo Bank temporarily dropped captain Alberto Contador and permanently dropped Ivan Basso, but the six riders who finished together posted a time that was good enough to put Contador in the lead among the contenders. Cannondale-Garmin and FDJ.fr were the last two finishers, and neither got close to Orica-GreenEdge.
The team time trial was too short to have a decisive impact on the race, but it positioned the contenders for the days to come. Contador is best positioned, with Fabio Aru (Astana) 0:06 behind the Spaniard. Rigoberto Uran (Etixx-Quick Step) lost 0:12 to Contador, and Richie Porte (Sky) was a major surprise, losing 0:20 to the Tinkoff-Saxo Bank captain.
Gerrans, who broke his elbow in a crash at Strade Bianche, noted today’s reversal of fortune and attributed it to his teammates and the staff at Orica-GreenEdge. “If I could chop the front of this jersey into nine pieces and share it amongst my teammates I would,” the Australian said. “Then the back of the jersey needs to be chopped into about 50 pieces for everyone involved in the ORICA-GreenEDGE organization because it’s a real credit to everybody within the team that we have these successes.
“I’ve had a difficult start to this year but I said all along things can change really quickly and I can’t think of a better way.”
In the overall, Gerrans leads teammates Michael Matthews and Michael Hepburn. Stage 2 will be a 177-km run from Alberga to Genoa. The stage will feature two climbs, but both will be too far from the finish to affect the outcome. The winner will be a sprinter. Which one? Matthews? Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal)? Luka Mezgec (Giant-Alpecin)? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!
Today's Giro d'Italia stage winners Team Orica-GreenEdge use our training tracker to log, analyze and plan their training and nutrition. Get their advantage by signing up for the same training tracker here.