In just 24 hours at the Tour de France Simon Gerrans and his Orica-GreenEDGE cycling team have achieved double the results that were expected of them in this year’s event. Getting the win in yesterdays road stage was a milestone commented Sport Director Matt White but winning the TTT and donning the yellow jersey is certainly history making for the Aussie team.
In what was a reasonably straight forward TTT course around Nice the winner were going to be the team that could maintain the highest wattage for the 25 minutes required. World Champions Omega-Pharma QuickStep looked to have the day sewn up stomping round the course in 25 minutes 57 seconds with team after team failing to beat their time. Being the second team to start the Belgian outfit had little or no references to beat along the way and ultimately succumbed to the fast finishing Aussies by just one second at the finish
Big hopes of the day were Garmin SHARP with Brit David Millar, the seasoned professional sitting in fourth before thstart had dreams of taking the yellow jersey for the second time in his career but in the end had to settle for sixth place 17 seconds off the pace with Millar defending the efforts his team mates and blaming his own subpar performance for their defeat.
Tomorrows 228.5 km stage from Cagnes-sur-mer - Marseille should be a fairly balanced affair offering chances for a wide variety of riders. The bunch sprint fans will be looking for Mark Cavendish to open his account at this year’s tour, the Manxman has recovering from a chest infection since the start but has now finished his antibiotics.
Kiwi fans will be looking to the lead-out efforts of Greg Henderson as the Otago fast man will be focussed on guiding his German captain to his first victory on the Tour this year.