Thursday, April 27, 2017

A glorious Saturday overall for the Movistar Team started in south Germany as Alex Dowsett claimed his first road victory of 2015 exactly two weeks after smashing the UCI Hour Record in the Manchester velodrome. The Essex-based rider became the new leader of the Bayern-Rundfahrt after snatching the decisive, 26km TT in Hassfurt by the smallest of margins (1"45) over Portuguese stageracer Tiago Machado (KAT), whom he was leading by only two seconds through the intermediate point.

The Blues' good references, with Javi Moreno in an early second place, helped the 26-year-old Briton, who got back in yellow eight months after his one-day lead in the Tour of Britain. Dowsett became the tenth rider to score a win in Movistar Team colours this season by a few minutes over team-mate Beñat Intxausti, adding up to a victory tally that increases to 22 with the duo's combined success in Germany and the Giro d'Italia. A 198km stage from Hassfurt to Nürnberg, with bonus seconds available at both the intermediate sprints and the finish, is on Dowsett's way to his first GC victory as pro.

REACTION / Alex Dowsett: “I’m happy to have won this one because I wasn’t sure I could even make it - it was my first real, proper time trial since last year. Obviously, everything was about training for the Hour Record since the start of the season, and the longest TT I did on the road was a 10km one in the Circuit de la Sarthe in April. Plus, I wasn’t comfortable on the bike, and that made it not the best TT I could - the saddle wasn’t on the ‘right’ place, because it’s different to ride on a time trial on the road than on the track. My power wasn’t the best, so I had to ride a clever TT: focusing on when to put the power down and to take some rest was the key. I was really pedalling more with my head than my legs today.

After the Hour Record I had some rest, didn’t do a lot of training up towards this and wasn’t sure how I’d feel - that’s why I’m so happy with this yellow jersey. Bonus seconds might possibly become crucial tomorrow - we just need to make sure that the right breakaway goes, and hopefully I can sprint a bit stronger than Machado. As long as he doesn’t get many seconds and we can control the breaks, I feel we can keep it tomorrow.”

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