Once again, Gerolsteiner went into Saturday's time trial stage with high hopes, and once again, their hopes were dashed. Only Sebastian Lang, fighting a cold, was able to do well and uphold the team's honour, finishing fifth on the day, 3'18 down on the winner.
"I wasn't 100 percent fit today. But that just makes me all the more satisfied with my performance," said the German time trial champion. "Too bad that Seppel is sick," said team manager Hans-Micheal Holczer. "When I heard him this morning, I didn't think he would be able to deliver such a great ride."
Markus Fothen had planned to win back the white jersey for best young rider, being only five seconds behind Damiano Cunego in that ranking. But it wasn't to be. Cunego finished a surprising 31 seconds ahead of Fothen. "I did everything I could," said Fothen. "But Cunego simply had a fantastic time trial."
Holczer took it philosophically. "You take it as it comes. Markus had a good time trial. And you have to remember that he finished behind someone who two years ago won the Giro d'Italia."