Tour du Poitou-Charentes (day 3)
Movistar Team duo beat former world champion Tony Martin (EQS) under rain in Poitou-Charentes' 23km ITT in Loudun, claim 31st victory for Blues in 2015
Less than a month away from the time trials in the World Championships to be held in Richmond (USA), the Movistar Team's main references on TT's have shown on Thursday, at the Tour du Poitou-Charentes stage four, to be well prepared for what's to come in September. Adriano Malori and Jonathan Castroviejo took a surprise one-two under insistent rain over the route from Monts-sur-Guesnes to Loudun (23.6km) by beating multiple world time trial champion Tony Martin (EQS) by a short margin – just 4" between the three after almost 28 minutes of effort.
Despite Martin taking a slender, one-second lead through the intermediate check, Castroviejo bounced back from a split 35" slower than Malori's and finished with a strong 27'50", which only his team-mate (27'49") could best. The power of José Luis Jaimerena's group was evident as Alex Dowsett, provisional leader for most of the race, took 4th, while Beñat Intxausti finished in 12th spot.
Other than the Movistar Team's 31st victory of the season and Malori's fifth so far this year -after Tirreno, San Luis, La Sarthe and the TT National championship-, it's also the ninth 2015 triumph into a speciality, individual time trials, where the potential by Unzué's riders and excellent technical work from the team partners is bringing a more than notorious progression.
Adriano Malori: "My third place in the Eneco Tour TT was short of a blow, as it forced me to think thoroughly about what I had missed and improve it for the upcoming races. I've spent a lot of time on the TT bike during the last few weeks, thinking about the Worlds, and I knew that my legs were getting better and better, but having Tony Martin racing here made it really difficult for us to aspire to the win. Many times, when he's into the startlist we all race for second place, but today I really felt fantastic. It wasn't a big margin for the win, but it was enough, and I'm super happy to have claimed this success and beating Martin, arguably the world's top time trialist, just one month away from the Worlds – it's so special.
"It was a bad day for the team yesterday and I did myself lose time in the GC. Etixx and Lotto attacked into the crosswinds, we all were riding further back into the bunch and I'm still angry about that, but this victory and the excellent result by the whole team eases off that feeling. Tomorrow? I don't think it will be possible to beat Martin and Etixx in the GC: they've got a strong team and tomorrow's stage, despite that short, steep climb into the circuit, isn't anywhere near to what we'd need for a serious attack. I think we must remain happy with this win."
Foto ©: Amélie Barbotin