Monday's second stage of the Jayco Herald Sun Tour was a hotly contested battle which saw the field blown apart in blustery conditions. CyclingNews reporter John Trevorrow caught up with the key riders at the finish line.
Mitchell Docker (Drapac Porsche)
Q: Top ride and you caught him (Menzies) on the last lap?
A: Yeah just up the hill and we mucked around a bit and I saw they were coming so I thought one of us is going to have to bite the bullet and it ended up being me. I knew Karl's reputation as a sprinter so I thought it would be better to go because it was better to be beaten by him than get caught and get nothing. Yesterday I had some breathing problems and it was pleasing to come back from that.
Tobias Erler (Giant Asia Racing Team)
Q: Tobias you are in very good form?
A: I won in Korea this year then afterwards I was in a big hole I just couldn't ride any more. Then I started training in Indonesia and the Tour of Indonesia and then some training in Canberra and I feel quite good.
Q: I here you climb very well for a big guy?
A: I now have a chance of getting in the top 16. I climb not bad, but I'm more than 80 kg and compared to Gerrans I have no chance. I saw the mountain last week and the first four kilometers are quite steep and then it's a long way uphill to the finish.
Robbie McEwen (Australian National Team)
Q: It was good day for the team?
A: Yeah it was great for the team. We had three good guys out there and two of our best GC guys and of course Gerro had to be there. The rest of us just did what we could. We just covered every move and once the boys got in it, well it was just a matter of sitting in the peloton and making it to the finish. I thought Henk may have won but I just noticed that he spent too much time talking to the TV guys on the road (laughs).
Q: A bit of a recovery day?
A: I felt a bit ordinary actually and it was a good thing that it settled down and maybe I can ride myself in.
Simon Gerrans (Australian National Team)
Q: A tough day in the office?
A: Yeah it was pretty tough. A long hard slog today basically. The race split apart so early it was just a matter of working hard at the front and getting that gap. Once we established the break then we just rolled through and kept it steady but it was still a hard slog into the wind all day.
Q: Karl said you were very strong near the finish!
A: Unfortunately I was a bit outnumbered. Trent Lowe and Henk did quite a bit early on to establish the break and they were a bit cooked near the end. So when the attacks started I had a couple of goes, but Navigators had a couple there, Drapac had a couple there as did HealthNet and the numbers game paid off in the end. Once I realised I couldn't win the stage I just though I'd cut my losses and contain the time gaps and keep it close. I'm not in a bad position but we are going to have to keep an eye on things. There are still some real good bike riders in with a chance.
Gilbert de Weert (DFL-Cyclingnews-Litespeed, Team Manager)
Q: How was it today?
A: Pretty average. We only had one guy in the break today. I would have liked one more there but it was impossible to do that once the break started. It's also a technical race. A group of the best get a small gap and that's about it. It happens. But Dave (Harrigan) rode well so now we need to keep him up the front. We were never really going for GC but we will take each day at a time.
David Harrigan (DFL-Cyclingnews-Litespeed)
Q: Well done Harro!
A: Yeah thanks. It was pretty hard early on. It was eyeballs out and Henk was keeping everyone pumped. There was a couple who didn't want to do much but with Gerro there and that team will probably win the tour, well they had to ride. Once the band broke and we got the gap we just had a long hard day in the saddle