Sergio Henao is yet another Sky rider to throw his hat in the GC ring after a fourth place finish in the gruelling stage 2 queen stage of the Tour of Poland. With breakaway riders filling the top three places on the day, Henao surged ahead to be best of the rest and cement a small lead over fellow GC rivals.
Earlier in the day an all star cast breakaway of 16 riders, including Giro d'Italia Champion Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and recent Alpe d'Huez stage winner Christophe Riblon (AG2R-La Mondiale), went clear with the gap settling at five minutes.
Following a struggle to defend the lead of overnight leader Diego Ulissi the Lampre-Merida receded as Team Sky enacted yet another successful plan.
Team Sky Sports Director Dan Hunt indicated that work done by 2012 Tour de France champion Bradley Wiggins was crucial in setting up Henao's success.
"It was a super ride by Sergio today, supported really well by Brad – right up until the last climb," he said. "Sergio looked really strong and he's in a great position now."
Aside from teamwork, Hunt asserted that Henao was ably assisted by the tough parcours set by the Tour of Poland organisers.
"That was hard. Over 5000 metres of climbing with three cat one climbs back-to-back. You just went down one but up another. The first one, Passo Pampeago, was absolutely brutal. The peloton was in bits. It smashed the whole race apart. The second climb was tough but Sergio was good on there. The Colombia squad set a decent tempo.
"Then onto the final climb Brad made sure Sergio had everything he needed and from there on he did great."
Aside from the race on the road, it is the logistical battle off it that will separate the best from the rest in this year's Tour of Poland. As riders and staff now travel from Italy back to Poland, Hunt indicated that Team Sky are looking beyond power meters for their marginal gains.
"The important thing for us at Team Sky is that we've planned it and logistically got our heads around it to make it as easy as possible on the riders," he explained. "When the guys finished we had two hotel rooms at the top which the organisation put on. We made sure that we put our own food in there with carers and clothes. All they had to do was get off their bike, get something to eat, get on a bus and go to the airport."
Henao now sits just four seconds behind race leader Rafal Majka (Saxo-Tinkoff) with five stages remaining