Tinkoff-Saxo’s Alberto Contador put in a top performance on the highly anticipated 59km time trial of Giro d’Italia. The team captain reclaimed the pink jersey and now leads the Giro by 2’28” over Aru after finishing third on the wind-swept parcours.
After a visit to the podium, where he could pull on the pink jersey yet again, Alberto Contador comments that he was very satisfied with his performance.
“I’m really happy. My legs are absolutely killing me as I had pain from the crash. I wasn’t sure how I was going to be today. The wind change was difficult but I’m really happy with today's performormance. The result is a big surprise to me. I gave it all I had, and paced myself carefully all the way. I have to keep my focus. There is still a lot of this Giro ahead of us”, says Contador and adds:
“The team has been really impressive. Yesterday, just 3.2km from the finish we had the crash. Tosatto was very attentive and quick, giving me the bike and making sure I got across the line as fast as I could to limit my losses. Every day they’ve been working hard and they’re going to continue to do so”.
After losing the jersey on stage 13 due to a crash in the bunch, Alberto Contador was on a mission to take back the lead. He did so by finishing third, 14 seconds behind stage winner Vasil Kiryienka. Team Owner Oleg Tinkov underlines that he had full confidence in his captain and adds that Alberto’s performance could have been a winning ride had it not been for the late shift in wind direction.
“Alberto took back the pink jersey and I was hoping for that to happen. Surprisingly, not many people were expecting a top performance from him today and thought that Porte and Uran would deliver the best times. But I had full confidence in Alberto and his performance didn’t come as a surprise to me. I’m very pleased and I’m happy for the team and for Alberto”, comments Oleg Tinkov, who followed Alberto’s TT effort from the team car.
“I thought he was going to take the stage win but he lost because of the wind. The wind changed direction in the late afternoon and it wasn’t to his advantage. Without the wind, I’m sure that he would have been the fastest. If you ask me, Alberto is the strongest here. Now we’re back in the pink jersey and that is indeed very good. I hope that he will keep it but it will be very tough”, says Oleg Tinkov, who also sends his warm regards to the squad at Tour of Norway, where Jesper Hansen retained the race lead:
“I would like to add that it was also a very good day as our guys in Norway are performing well. I’m very proud of them and send my regards to Jesper Hansen. I cross my fingers and hope that he can take the overall win tomorrow”.
Alberto Contador went into the 59.4km time trial to Valdobbiadene having suffered two crashes during this year’s Giro d’Italia. But Tinkoff-Saxo’s Head Sports Director Steven de Jongh tells that any concerns silenced, as Contador delivered top times from the get go.
“We are really happy for the win. Alberto has done great time trials in the past and today was not an exception. He did a nice job on the flat part and on the uphill section later on he had a lot of power. After his crashes on stage 6 and on yesterday’s stage we were of course paying close attention to his knee and shoulder, but he showed without a doubt that he could manage it. In the morning on the rollers, he complained a bit about his knee but I saw he could maintain a good aerodynamic position and perform”, tells Steven de Jongh before adding about the 2’28” lead Contador now holds in the GC.
“For sure it’s better to have this margin to Aru than the one he had before, which was only a few seconds. We are happy but we have some hard stages and tough weather conditions so we need to keep our focus and take it day by day. The team is without doubt motivated as we head into a very important part of this year’s Giro”, finishes Steven de Jongh.