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Team Sky at full speed
Thomas misses out on yellow jersey
The British team finished 3rd, four seconds down on winners Garmin-Cervélo, and missed out on the opportunity to put Geraint Thomas into the overall lead. While Wiggins was disappointed for his young Welsh teammate, he said that Sky’s opening weekend in 2011 was a vast improvement on twelve months ago.
"We gained more time on some of the GC guys and it's been a fantastic start to this year's Tour, in complete contrast to last year,” Wiggins said. “G [Thomas] you could see was hungry for it. That is the only slight tinge of disappointment, that he didn't get the jersey because he really deserved it."
As team leader, Wiggins took responsibility for guiding his Sky team home over the final section of the course.
“My role was to keep the pace in the final when the wind was at its greatest,” he said. “Everyone played their part today and it was just a fantastic performance. When you come away from a race like that knowing there was nothing else you could have done there is certainly no disappointment there.”
Directeur sportif Sean Yates echoed his rider’s statements, and said that Sky had not made any technical errors out on the course, although he wondered if the wind conditions had been the same for all of the teams.
“There were no incidents of any kind so basically they couldn't have gone any faster, and the fastest team won on the day,” Yates said. “The only area where there could be some area of debate is the strength of the wind from when we went off compared to when Garmin went and also BMC. It only takes a little bit of a wind fluctuation and that can make a difference.
"It did seem to be very windy, and the time checks would suggest that on the way out there was a stronger tailwind than Garmin, so therefore a stronger headwind coming back into the finish.”
Geraint Thomas lies four seconds off the yellow jersey after the stage, and had to console himself with another day in the white jersey. The Welshman was disappointed that Sky had missed out on the stage win, but acknowledged that Wiggins’ overall placing was the most important thing.
“Obviously we're a bit disappointed because we really wanted to win that but in the grand scheme of things Brad's still right up there in the overall and that's what matters," Thomas said.