The 3rd stage of the Criterium du Dauphine would be a tough 24.5km team trial trial test to Montagny. The current world champions in TTT discipline, BMC Racing, would ride away with the victory while Astana finished in 2nd and Movistar in 3rd place.
Team BMC Racing was the 3rd team off today and everybody knew the American team would set a high early benchmark. They would cross the line in a time of 29’58”, a time that would not be beaten by any of the teams that followed after them.
MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung would relish the rare opportunity to test themselves against the big World Tour teams in the team trial discipline. Our African team would go through the intermediate time check in what would only be the 18th fastest time on the day but the boys rode strongly over the 2nd half of the stage to eventually finish in 15th place.
Averaging 47.2km/h for the full length of the course meant our African team came in at 31’05” and 1’07” down on the winning time. As there were no King of the Mountains points up for grabs during the stage, Daniel Teklehaimanot would retain the polka dot jersey going into tomorrow’s next road stage.
Douglas Ryder – Team Principal
The guys did start off pretty slowly, particularly in the first two kilometers but just kept building on their pace over the course. They went through the intermediate time check well down on the leaderboard but were able to move up nicely after a really strong ride over the 2nd half of the course. In the end there were around 6 teams just ahead of us who were within about 15 seconds of our time. Our guys realised they had the potential to do quite a bit more today and with the Tour de France having a similar distance TTT, on a similar type course, just showed us that we have a realistic chance of going top 10 at the Tour’s TTT and that would just be phenomenal. The guys hadn’t done a TTT in a long time and they looked good riding together today. It’s quite different doing a team time trial with 8 or 9 riders as opposed to 4 or 6 as we’ve already done this year. So the team is pretty pumped at the moment and everyone is really positive.