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Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial replaced with short individual test

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The final 2014 Tirreno-Adriatico podium: Nairo Quintana, Alberto Contador and Roman Krueziger

The final 2014 Tirreno-Adriatico podium: Nairo Quintana, Alberto Contador and Roman Krueziger
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Astana during the Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial.

Astana during the Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) tries the trident out for size.

Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) tries the trident out for size.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) with the trident trophy of overall Tirreno-Adriatico winner

Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) with the trident trophy of overall Tirreno-Adriatico winner
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Neptune's trident is the holy grail of Tirreno-Adriatico

Neptune's trident is the holy grail of Tirreno-Adriatico
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Omega Pharma-QuickStep celebrate victory at the Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial.

Omega Pharma-QuickStep celebrate victory at the Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Tirreno-Adriatico organiser RCS Sport has announced that Wednesday’s planned opening team time trial in Lido di Camaiore has been replaced by a shorter, 5.7km individual test due to recent bad weather along the Tuscan coast.

The race was due to begin with a 22.7km team time trial, but high winds and torrential rain on the Tyrrhenian coast in recent days – chiefly in the Versilia area that contains Camaiore and neighbouring Forte dei Marmi – forced a change to Wednesday’s stage.

“Due to the extreme weather conditions that have affected Tuscany and in particular the area around Versilia, in recent days, RCS Sport has found it necessary to modify the first stage of Tirreno Adriatico, scheduled for Wednesday 11 March,” read an RCS statement released on Monday afternoon.

The 5.7km time trial will thus remain in Lido di Camaiore, and will finish in the same location, the Lungomare Bernardini, as had been planned for the team time trial.

Tirreno-Adriatico will thus be bookended by two individual time trials this year, as the race once again concludes with a 10km time trial in San Benedetto del Tronto on the Adriatic coast.

Monday marked a day of changes to the scheduled programming for Tirreno-Adriatico, as both Chris Froome (Sky) and Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano) announced their withdrawal from the race due to illness.

Tirreno-Adriatico was due to be the first and only meeting of the four main Tour de France contenders – Froome, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo), Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar) – before their main rendezvous in July.