CANYON//SRAM Racing finished fifth today behind Twenty 16 Ridebiker in the team time trial stage two of the Amgen Tour of California Breakaway from Heart Disease Women's Race empowered by SRAM. The US based team won the stage with an average speed of 44.2km/hour and finished six seconds ahead of Boels Dolman and 25 seconds clear of third placed United Healthcare.
The 20.3km out and back style course around the city of Folsom was tougher than the profile showed. The undulations, strong winds and the tour regulation that all teams must use road bikes made it a challenging course.
Following the stage Lisa Brennauer commented on the team's fifth place, "Of course this was not our best TTT and being on road bikes is quite different. But for sure we are not happy with the result and the outcome of the TTT. There were no major mistakes, although there was one corner we took too fast and we had to find each other again, but overall there were not obvious major mistakes. It’s just that as a group we weren’t strong enough so we couldn’t get any better than fifth place today.
Directeur Sportif Ronny Lauke who boasts being behind the last four TTT world champion victories said the team is taking time to reach its potential in 2016. "When you are used to being a contender for the win whenever there is a team time trial, and then you finish fifth like today then it becomes quite an interesting day."
"On the other hand if you look into detail about it, the group that we have here, they are not all on the best form nor have they the most experience riding together in a TTT. That said Tiffany did better than expected today and Alena and Lisa were the strongest for our group. To finish 36 seconds behind the winner is a significant gap in my opinion. I can say they have tried and after yesterday's stage one, then this is what I wanted to see. But it is far away from being perfect and far away from being where we aim to be. We hope the next two stages here in California can match our expectations in some way."
Brennauer also suggested the team will be racing aggressive in the last two stages, "There’s still two more stages and two more chances for a good result and those last races suit us. We don’t have anything to hide and we have nothing to lose, so we can go open into the race and make it aggressive."
Stage three tomorrow is a 111km road stage around Santa Rosa. Racing starts at 09:15 PDT. Follow the action on the team's Twitter @WMNcycling and using #UCIWWT.
Stage 3 Santa Rosa, 111km, 09:15hrs PDT
Stage 4 Sacramento, 66km, 11:40hrs PDT
by Beth Duryea