Tirreno-Adriatico Stage 1 Preview

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Tirreno Stage 1

This is the same team time trial stage that opened the race last year. It’s only 16.9 km but most of the route is alongside the sea and the wind and the rain could easily be a factor. The weather forecast isn’t very promising but let’s hope all teams get the same conditions – wet or not.

The intermediate time after 7,9 km is right before the more technical part of the route, meaning the fastest team here won’t necessarily win the stage. The teams have been training on the route for a couple of days already and every team with ambitions of winning this stage will know every part of the route down to the smallest detail.

Last year GreenEdge killed the competition and distanced number two (Radioshack) with 17 seconds. This year we have at least three teams with a good chance of winning and naturally GreenEdge are among them again. The Australian team have specialists like Tuft, Mouris, Lancaster and Impey plus riders like Langeveld and Goss who are good in this discipline too. GreenEdge have been training on the course for the past four days and seem to be the big favorite. Still there are two teams with a chance of beating them.

BMC and Omega Pharma-Quickstep both bring very strong teams for this stage. Originally Tony Martin was set to ride Paris-Nice, but in the end he decided to do Tirreno in order to help out the team in this stage and try his luck in the final time trial. Together with Martin, Quickstep have guys like Kwiatkowski, Stybar, Terpstra, Steegmans and Cavendish for the team time trial and they should be able to clock in a top3 time Wednesday afternoon.

Same goes for BMC. Unlike GreenEdge and Quickstep, BMC are extra motivated to do well in team time trial in order give Cadel Evans a good start in the GC. The American team were outstanding in the TTT in Tour of Qatar and that was even without Evans, Hushovd and Quinziato. Personally, I think this will be a fight between BMC and GreenEdge but I wouldn’t count out Quickstep.

Team Saxo-Tinkoff and Radioshack will most likely be the last two teams in the Top5 for this stage and on a good day both of them could make Top3 as well. It all depends on the weather conditions.

With five so strong teams, it’s not very easy to pick a joker but since it’s now a tradition to do so, I’ll say Blanco. The Dutch team have started out the season in a great way – already taking 10 wins – and they do bring a good team for the TTT as well. Bauke Mollema is aiming at the overall classification and I wouldn’t be surprised if they start out Tirreno-Adriatico the same way they have started out the season.

Winnerpick: BMC or GreenEdge
Joker: Blanco

The first team start at 14:45 local time and with three minutes intervals we can expect the last team to finish around 16:10. For live stage coverage check out cyclingfans & steephills.

C-Cycling

Preview courtesy of C-Cycling. Remember you can follow Mikel Condé on Twitter as @mrconde

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{ 15 comments }

Netserk March 5, 2013 at 11:40 pm

A lot of the riders at Blanco have been sick the last couple of days, so I wouldn’t expect too much from them.

Winner pick: OP-QS
Joker: Garmin

Cameron March 6, 2013 at 4:19 pm

Well, Garmin’s result certainly ended up being quite funny.

They can’t be happy

tonyrone March 5, 2013 at 11:59 pm

BMC

Jason March 6, 2013 at 10:41 am

On paper there are a lot of teams that can go for this..

Movistar with a similar team won in Vuelta.. Katusha were good both in Vuelta and Giro.. while for Garmin it is a good discipline and Sky have a strong team..

Can’t wait this TA will be very good!!!!!!!

vimes March 6, 2013 at 2:00 pm

Cannondale could surprise. 8 strong riders, no weak spot, and they are in form, as we saw last week. It’s raining by the way, hopefully it doesn’t stop midrace.

jason March 6, 2013 at 2:05 pm

and usually they are also quite good in these events!

T-Ha March 6, 2013 at 6:58 pm

Any idea why Tony Martin wasn’t in the Rainbow Jersey. National TT Champs (Dowsett and Barta) were in there national colours?

The Inner Ring March 6, 2013 at 7:37 pm

It’s a team time trial and Tony Martin is only the solo world champion. Under rule 1.3.068 the jersey has to be worn “category in which they won their title and no other event” so strictly speaking Dowsett and Barta should have been in their normal jerseys.

T-Ha March 6, 2013 at 7:45 pm

Another example of the UCI clearly and transparently communicating information to all teams….

Anonymous March 6, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Because their is a WC TTT race…

Jason March 6, 2013 at 7:49 pm

Greek National TT champion did not help Euskatel… :(

50plus March 6, 2013 at 8:25 pm

Can anyone explain to me why OP-QS decides that the win goes to the guy with the biggest ego and not to the guy who did most of the work? I don’t see any tactical need for that.

The Inner Ring March 6, 2013 at 8:35 pm

Money. Cavendish is marketable and his image will get shown around the world. “Unknown rider in overall lead” is not a common headline.

But I like your idea too and cycling often can reward the helper but not today it seems.

50plus March 6, 2013 at 8:43 pm

Well, wouldn’t call Tony Martin the ‘helper’ on this stage. Is he that much less marketable? I would guess he just can’t compete ego-wise.

cthulhu March 6, 2013 at 11:44 pm

Yes, this is a question that I too was thinking about,
Who called the shots regarding this decision, did Cav “decided ” on his own or did they DS decided this. And I wondered, why not give it for example to Terpstra as a reward for all his loyal work, since Cav has a really good chance to take tomorrow over thanks to the time bonus.
Terpstra isn’t that unknown, would have deserved it in my opinion and the team/sponsors would still have gotten the Cav in blue shots.

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