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“We were afraid the weather might worsen later in the day so we decided that Bradley would start early, and although he rode OK, I don’t think he wanted to jeopardise anything by risking it all," Frost says

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BRADLEY WIGGINS

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PETER KENNAUGH

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SERGIO LUIS HENAO

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TEAM SKY

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TOUR DE SUISSE

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14.06.2014 @ 20:26 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Going into the opening time trial of the Tour de Suisse, Bradley Wiggins was one of the big favourites but the Brit could only manage 14th. With several corners and a very technical descent, his Sky team claims that their star didn't want to take any risks and were pleased to see Sergio Henao and Peter Kennaugh perform surprisingly well.

 

Peter Kennaugh was the fastest finisher for Team Sky on the opening stage of the Tour de Suisse after Tony Martin dominated the time trial.

 

Kennaugh was the final Team Sky rider down the start ramp in Bellinzona and produced an impressive display to finish in 11th place after clocking a time of 14 minutes 17 seconds on the 9.4km course.

 

Bradley Wiggins meanwhile, completed a fast and technical run in 14min 20sec to stay in touch with the general classification contenders. The British rider beat the likes of Cadel Evans (BMC) and reining champion Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida) to seal 14th place, 32 seconds off the pace.

 

Team Sky also welcomed Sergio Henao back into the fold and the Colombian finished the short opening test 41 seconds down on stage winner Martin to end the day in 26th, one place behind team mate Philip Deignan.

 

Elsewhere, Rohan Dennis showed the same form that saw him finish runner up to Wiggins at the Tour of California. The Garmin-Sharp rider set an early benchmark before World Time Trial Champion Martin (Omega Pharma – Quick-Step) powered through the course 13 seconds quicker than the Australian, who hung on for third.

 

Speaking after the stage, Sports Director Dan Frost was content with what he had seen and shed some light on the team’s tactics on what proved an unpredictable parcours.

 

He said: “We were afraid the weather might worsen later in the day so we decided that Bradley would start early, and although he rode OK, I don’t think he wanted to jeopardise anything by risking it all.

 

“The bike choices also gave us plenty to think about. With that tricky climb on the route, we left it to the riders’ preference and all of them apart from Sergio were on their TT bikes.

 

“Sergio preferred his regular bike with the tri-bars on it as he felt he could do better on the climb. I’m pleased with how he rode, and you can see from the results that Pete also did a good effort. He was really on it and he’s really keen to have a good race here and do his bit for the team.”

 

Sunday stage features two hors-categorie climbs, but the fact they come midway through the stage makes Frost believe it could still come down to some form of sprint finish.

 

He added: “It might prove a bit tough for the pure sprinters so we’re expecting the likes of Cannondale (who are riding for Peter Sagan) and Giant-Shimano (riding for John Degenkolb) to push a hard pace on the climbs to distance the likes of Mark Cavendish.

 

“I don’t think the GC guys will split it up, but it will probably come down to a reduced group at the end. We hope that we can have Ben [Swift] in there, so we’ll do our best to support him, but the objective is that our GC guys like Pete, Sergio and Bradley don’t lose and time.”

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