The BMC Racing Team may not have done enough to win the opening team time trial of the 2014 Giro d'Italia, but their third place finish, just seven seconds off the time of Orica-GreenEdge, puts leader Cadel Evans in a strong position in the overall classification.
BMC was just two seconds slower than Rigoberto Uran's Omega Pharma-QuickStep team, but put time into other main contenders. Evans put 1:26 into Katusha's Joaquim Rodriguez, 46 seconds into Nairo Quintana of Movistar (46 seconds) and 31 seconds into Michele Scarponi (Astana).
"For the general classification, I think our result is quite promising," Evans said. "We have already made some time gains to some of the favorites and that is really favorable for the overall.
"We can look at it in two ways, we have a lot of mountains to go and so it might not mean that much. But, after only 20km of racing to have these time gaps has put us in the right direction. it's a nice boost for the guys. I'm really happy with how they rode."
BMC had to overcome some bad luck along the way to their result, including the pre-race crash of American Brent Bookwalter. They also had to endure wet roads, while Orica-GreenEdge beat the rain and rode on a mostly dry surface.
"I think we had the legs to do more. But in these conditions, we were a little bit unlucky with Brent Bookwalter's crash and Ben Hermans's puncture. It took a little bit of power away from us. But I think we rode well to get the results that we got. Compliments to the guys for that."
The race continues in Ireland for two more stages, and Evans said he and the team are aiming to just get through the next days safely.
"After seeing the conditions today on the course, I don't think it's going to be easy. It's unfamiliar territory for us all. We're used to racing in Continental Europe. Here in Ireland, the road conditions are a little different and the weather conditions are very variable and quite testing. I think we're going to be in for two difficult days. I'm not intimidated by that, I have two good guys like [Daniel] Oss and [Manuel] Quinziato to help me through these days. Our main goal is to get through them safely."
Click here to subscribe to the Cyclingnews video channel.
Thank you for signing up to Cycling News. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.