Euskaltel-Euskadi carried out a team time trial training session Friday in the Basque region of Spain. Nine of the team’s 11-rider Tour short list took part in training aimed at preparing the squad for the Tour De France’s stage four team time trial in Montpellier on July 7.
Mikel Astarloza, Igor Antón, Egoi Martínez, Gorka Verdugo, Rubén Pérez, Amets Txurruka, Alan Pérez, Iñigo Landaluze and Iñaki Isasi completed 75km of time trial training under the guidance of team technical director Igor González de Galdeano. The team's other potential tour riders, Juan Jose Oroz and Koldo Fernández, were absent since they were at the Tour de Suisse.
According to González de Galdeano, the day’s session was designed to fine tune rider positions and equipment ahead of next month’s 38km test in France.
"There are times when force perhaps counts more than the technique, but in this case, the latter will be of vital importance," he said. "That it is the reason why today we practiced that discipline – to adjust to the equipment and maximize our chances of getting our best result."
"The session has helped us to work together better," said Mikel Astarloza. "We took it seriously and rolled very fast."
Euskaltel-Euskadi’s performance at Tour team time trials has traditionally been an Achilles’ heel for the orange-clad squad. In the Tour’s last team time trial, in 2005, Euskaltel-Euskadi finished 3:59 down on Lance Armstrong’s Discovery Channel team.