The team occupied the hot seat early on but once the gold medal favourites started crossed the line, Trek was pushed down the standings knowing a slow start costed them a higher placing.
"I think we made a mistake from the car – we were not able to understand that the speed was not enough in the beginning; the speed looked good and it was very high but it was a mistake and we were not able to fix it," sports director Josu Larrazabal said. "From that moment we were recovering time, especially in the last part, and the guys fought well. But 26 seconds from the podium, 30 seconds from the second place, is disappointing.
"We lost between 30-35 seconds we think with our start. There is nothing to do, the race is gone, but this is something we need to improve on for next year."
Four time individual time trial World Champion Fabian Cancellara praised the team for its efforts in the race but agreed that a slow start put an end to any chances of a medal.
"I think we did a nice TTT, we did not have too many mistakes, but the biggest thing we did was to start too slow," said Cancellara after the race. "Everyone delivered and did a nice job. With a TTT everything has to be 100% and we were too slow at the beginning.
"It's hard to say, but when you see the split times now it's crazy when you see how much we gained over the course. At the end we were on the limit so maybe if we went deeper and stronger at the start that would have made the difference. But we did it like this, and we have to live with that."