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"I would have liked to perform better, but there are days where you have good legs and others where you don’t. Right from the start, I wasn't able to get my rhythm but it was a day of only 5 kilometers."

Photo: Sirotti






11.03.2015 @ 20:53 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Tinkoff-Saxo got off to a fast start at the short and windy 5.4km prologue in Tirreno-Adriatico, with both Maciej Bodnar and Peter Sagan powering their way into the stage top-ten. Bodnar finished 4th just two seconds off stage winner Adriano Malori – a result that pleases him as well as team manager Bjarne Riis.
“We did okay and we had Bodnar in 4th place and Sagan in 9th. That was a good result and I'm very happy with the performance of these two guys. Overall, all our riders did okay”, comments Bjarne Riis after the stage. “Alberto was not in top form and we could see it while he was racing. We expected a little bit more from him today but there are days like this and that isn't a problem”, adds Bjarne Riis.

The short, powerful 5.4km prologue in Lido di Camaiore was carried out in gusty conditions on a fast circuit, which meant that the riders had to keep pressure on the pedals at all times without throwing caution to the wind. Fastest Tinkoff-Saxo rider on the day, Maciej Bodnar, notes after the stage that he had achieved a satisfying result.
“I feel the race went quite well for me and I finished two seconds behind Malori, who was very strong. The course had four quite fast turns with one of them a bit riskier than the other three. You had to be more attentive in order to avoid a stupid crash” Bodnar says and adds:
“However, compared to last year, I feel much stronger and I am confident about my current shape. My form gets better every week that passes since the start of the year and this is a very important factor. Although we are still at the early stages of the season, I feel that a good year is ahead for me. The best is yet to come”.

The 5.4km prologue kickstarting Tirreno-Adriatico was a last-minute solution, since the original and longer team time-trial had to be scrapped due to heavy winds that knocked down trees, creating debris on the parcours. Bjarne Riis says that the conversion was an anticlimax.
“It is a bit of a disappointment for us that the team time-trial was scrapped and replaced by an individual time-trial. We were really looking forward to that as we had prepared very well and we felt we had a chance to win”.
Alberto Contador finished 19 seconds behind stage winner Adriano Malori (Movistar) on the flat parcours. Subsequently, the team leader told that he was not content with his performance but hoped to regain the 8 and 9 seconds he, respectively, lost to GC-rivals Nibali and Uran.
"I would have liked to perform better, but there are days where you have good legs and others where you don’t. Right from the start, I wasn't able to get my rhythm but it was a day of only 5 kilometers and although I lost time to some rivals, in particular Urán and Nibali, I hope I can recover it", says Contador and adds:
"Nibali was good, we all know he's a great rider. His form is getting better and I'm sure it will be one of the main candidates to win. In a race like Paris-Nice and Tirreno-Adriatico, eight seconds carry a lot of weight. I do not know if there will be enough margin to recover them”.



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