Team experience helps Trentin secure Tour de France stage win

Second year pro Matteo Trentin said victory today in the Tour de France was part-built on knowledge soaked up from Mark Cavendish and other experienced riders in the Omega Pharma-QuickStep team.

The 23-year-old – who became the first Italian to win a Tour stage since Alessandro Petacchi took a brace in 2010 – said, "All the experience in the team is also part of this victory because I have the chance to stay with the big champion of the team Mark [Cavendish] and also Tony [Martin] for the time trial."

Trentin, a Tour debutant, said the regular act of pre-planning aspects of Cavendish’s sprint lead out had rubbed off on him. It meant he stayed calm as a flurry of attacks split the initial 18-man group which contested the today’s final in Lyon.

"The main thing that we always say is be calm and always wait for the right moment," he said. "Today I just made the right moment. I saw the wind and everybody who went out before came back because it was too strong to make a longer sprint that 200 meters. I just waited because I know that my good sprint is 200 meters."

After yesterday’s tough stage where Trentin’s Belgian squad kept the pace furiously high in tough crosswinds, he said he settled into the break and tried to reserve all of the energy he could for the final.

"The first two hours with 47km/h average with 1,000m climbing was really, really fast," he commented. "After that I tried to pull as less as possible because I was still tired from yesterday."

Trentin, who studied sports science at Verona University and is a former Italian amateur road champion, said he was still learning his craft as a professional. He said it was difficult to predict what type of rider he may become.

"After two years of professional cycling, I’ve tried almost everything. I did the Classics, I did one Grand Tour [2013 Giro] and I do the second in the same year. For sure I love the Classics but I think I have to grow more to be sure if I’m to be this rider or that rider. We can see in a few years."

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Sam started as a trainee reporter on daily newspapers in the UK before moving to South Africa where he contributed to national cycling magazine Ride for three years. After moving back to the UK he joined Procycling as a staff writer in November 2010.