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Sports director tips competitive team time trial from grand tour debutants
Matt White has praised his Orica GreenEdge team after Matthew Goss won stage 3 of the Giro d'Italia. It was Goss's first win in almost a year, and the Australian WorldTour team's first grand tour stage win.
"It was very pleasing and a great ride by the boys," White told Cyclingnews.
Goss had picked up a number of placings heading into today's stage, including four second places at the recent Tour of Turkey and White admitted that it had been a frustrating run for his lead sprinter.
"It had been frustrating time for Matt. He'd been in good shape for San Remo and Gent Wevelgem, although probably not as good as last year but then after those races there wasn't much left for him to try and win. He got sick and then he had a break. That break has done him good and he's come back well.
"He came here frustrated though and I've never seen someone get four second places in a week and lose two in a photo so he was really keen to get a win here and we knew he was ready."
Orica GreenEdge based their win on a superb leadout, delivering Goss to within 300 meters of the line.
"It was a very impressive leadout, especially from Impey who hasn't got that much experience at leading out at this level but we always knew that timing would critical it was more like a circuit race out there today and that if you got your timing wrong it was always going to make a difference."
With the race now taking a rest day as it travel back to Italian shores, White and his team have 24 hours of rest before stage 4, a 32km team time trial around Verona. Having won the TTT at March Tirreno-Adriatico the team will be amongst the favourites, despite only three riders from March's team taking part in the Giro.
"I expect Garmin to be the favourites," said White.
"On paper they're much stronger than everybody else and Sky has a strong team as well. I think it we'll be competitive but it's up to the guys and how they ride but they'll be in the mix for sure."
But for now Orica-GreenEdge can toast their debut stage win in a grand tour, a win that keeps their strong start to the season rolling into the heart of the Giro's three weeks.
"We'll take every opportunity we can and there are a couple of stages that suit Gossy better than others," a confident White added.
"He's fast, don't get me wrong, but he's not your pure, pure sprinter like Cavendish or Greipel. Usually when Gossy wins it's when it's hard and it's been a long race so for him to win today, it was very impressive.
"It's a great feeling to get a win but we've had such a good start to this year that we'll move on and tomorrow is another day. I think we'll be very competitive in the team time trial."