Porte to sleep in ‘marginal gains’ motorhome during Giro d’Italia

Dave Brailsford has confirmed that Richie Porte will sleep in a large American-style motorhome during the Giro d'Italia instead of the usual team hotel with his teammates.

Team Sky has hired the large motorhome for the duration of the race and it was parked outside the team hotel in Moresco during the opening stages of the Giro d'Italia. Porte posted a photo of his mobile accommodation on social media.

Brailsford was apparently inspired by Formula 1 pilot and Moto GP pilots sleeping in luxury motorhomes at race circuits around the world rather than in hotels.

The innovative British team manager thinks the benefits of motorhome could outweigh the tradition of staying in different hotel every night. It appears to be yet another of Team Sky's marginal gains.

Team Sky could use the motorhome during the Tour de France but the any decision will be based on the results of the mobile home with Porte at the Giro d'Italia.

"Even though we have our own mattresses and pillow, when you change hotel every night, you have unpack and pack everyday, you go into a hotel without knowing what it's like," Brailsford explained to Cyclingnews and Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I've been thinking about if you didn't have to do all of that and if you have your own environment and privacy, and if you have your own bed. It seemed there was a logic to try to see if works. We have nine riders and so Richie would sleep on his own anyway but the riders will all eat together. You never know till you try. Some things support the idea and others don't. What about noise and security for example? But when you balance it up, we decided to give it a go. I'll tell you in three weeks if it's a marginal gain."

Transfer talk about Kwiatkowski

Brailsford intends to spend a lot of time at the Giro d'Italia this year as Porte tries to win the pink jersey. It seems he will also work on defining Team Sky's squad for 2016.

Bradley Wiggins' move to the track and his own WIGGINS Continental team, marks the end of an era at Team Sky. With other riders in the final years of their contracts, it seems that Brailsford is looking to rejuvenate the Team Sky roster.

World champion Michal Kwiatkowski is rumoured to be at the top of Team Sky’s shopping list, even though his current Etixx-Quickstep team is keen to renew his contract for 2016. Cyclingnews understands that Kwiatkowski will choose between the two teams rather than go elsewhere. Fellow Polish rider Michal Gołas is expected to stay with his compatriot in any deal.

Brailsford avoided talking specifically about Kwiatkowski, insisting he wants to secure the British-core of Team Sky first.

"We've got quite a few guys out of contract at the end of the season and so we want to look at these first, particularly for the British guys. We want to have the core group re-contracted," he said, refusing to speak about specific riders and if any British riders could move on from Team Sky.

"You're always going to have an issue when they perform like they do and they'll be of interest to everyone else. Some of them have been Team Sky riders all their career and perhaps they’re thinking what it’d be like in another programme. You can see why."

Team Sky is looking to bounce back from a disappointing start to the Giro d'Italia after finishing ninth in the opening team time trial. It was one of Team Sky's worst ever performance in Grand Tour team time trials and Brailsford was more concerned about the result rather then seconds lost to Riche Porte's Grand Tour rivals.

"We haven't looked at things in detail yet, but on one hand if you'd told me that we’d have been ninth, well, we'd have hoped to be better than ninth that’s for sure. But if you'd told me just the time gaps between the GC riders, then that's not such a big deal," he said.

"We've got little Sebastien (Henao) and Mikel (Nieve) was always going to sit on. I think we've got some good horsepower but there was a headwind but some of the other guys, such as Richie (Porte) and Leo (Konig) are quite small. But overall, it's neither great or really bad either. Once we've analysed it, we'll work it out."

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