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"For sure it will be a big game between him and Tony Martin and Bradley Wiggins, although his eye is on bigger goals ahead that require a different effort than a short TT.  But Fabian is always competitive and will look for a good...

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FABIAN CANCELLARA

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JULIAN DAVID ARREDONDO

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ROBERT KISERLOVSKI

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TIRRENO - ADRIATICO

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TREK - SEGAFREDO

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YAROSLAV POPOVYCH

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17.03.2014 @ 23:20 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

It will be a big day for Trek in tomorrow's time trial at the Tirreno-Adriatico. While the team is hopeful that Julian Arredondo and Robert Kiserlovski can defend their top 10 positions, Fabian Cancellara is ready to face archrivals Tony Martin and Bradley Wiggins.

 

The 189-kilometer stage six from Bucchianico to Porto Sant'Elpidio stretched along the Adriatic coast and included a few bumps in a predominantly flat parcours.  With the final significant climb ((2.7km and 5.6%) crested with still 40 kilometers to go it was too far out to unseat most sprinters with one exception: Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano).

 

The race into Sant’Elpido - where the peloton navigated two laps of a 13.5-kilometer circuit - was a multi-layered pursuit between Giant-Shimano, trying to catch back the main group with Kittel in tow, and the peloton trying to snag back the day’s four-man breakaway. Giant-Shimano would get within 30 seconds before throwing in the towel as the sprinters’ teams increased the pace into the last kilometers.

 

A crash around a corner with 1.5-kilometers remaining resulted in a few members of Lotto-Belisol hitting the ground and dislodging their lead out train, as well as disrupting others. Omega Pharma-Quick Step managed to escape the melee, slipping through on the inside, and it was an uncontested sprint for Mark Cavendish. He easily won by a few bike lengths and teammate Alessandro Petacchi, the final lead out man for Cavendish, would also finish second. Peter Sagan (Cannondale) rounded out the top three.

 

The overall GC remains unchanged, with Trek Factory Racing Julián Arredondo and Robert Kiserlovski finishing safely in the same time as the main peloton.

 

“It looked like an easy day on paper, but it was not so easy out there today," Yaroslav Popovych said. "It was a really good breakaway, four strong riders, and the sprinters’ teams began to control things early since the breakaway had five to six minutes; many times it was a single line. It was really fast.

 

“We had two climbs 50K from the finish, not big, but you had to stay together in the front and be attentive because it was dangerous for the TT tomorrow - you do not want to lose any seconds with Julián and Robert.

 

“We were always in the front: Markel [Irizar] was always with Arredondo and me with Robert. Sometimes that would switch as we would get caught up in the big mass of the group, but we were always around them.”

 

The final stage tomorrow is a 9.1-kilometer time trial where Arredondo and Kiserlovski will battle to decide the final GC order as the team fights to keep both in the top 10. Sport director Luca Guercilena talked us through how the TT may shape up for the team tomorrow.

 

“This is the first time that Julián will have to race a TT as a leader for us, and for sure he will feel the pressure. We will try and make it as comfortable for him as possible, it is a matter of seconds, but if he can repeat more or less what he did at Ruta del Sol he can still make a top 10 in the GC. Realistically, looking at who is behind him, we hope he can end with a 7th place overall.

 

“For Robert we have worked a lot on his time trialing this winter so it will be a test for him in a short TT like this. And with Fabian a lot will depend on the wind when he starts compared to the others, because on this parcours it can make a lot of difference. For sure it will be a big game between him and Tony Martin and Bradley Wiggins, although his eye is on bigger goals ahead that require a different effort than a short TT.  But Fabian is always competitive and will look for a good result.”

 

Jesse Sergent was unable to take the start today. He had been dealing with an ingrown toenail for days that finally got the best of him. 

 

You can read our preview of the final stage here and follow our love coverage at 14.15 CET on CyclingQuotes.com/live.

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