Omega Pharma-Quick Step win Tirreno-Adriatico team time trial

Omega Pharma-Quick Step claimed victory in the opening team time trial at Tirreno-Adriatico and put Mark Cavendish into the overall lead with a harmonious collective effort on a rainy afternoon in Tuscany. The Belgian squad made light of the conditions to hurtle around the 16.9km route from San Vincenzo to Donoratico some 11 seconds clear of Movistar and 16 ahead of BMC.

While Cavendish will wear the first maglia azzurra of the race after crossing the line in front, he was quick to acknowledge the role world time trial champion Tony Martin had played in securing the win for a well-oiled Omega Pharma-Quick Step squad. The team averaged 52.286kph to see off Movistar – for whom Alex Dowsett impressed – and a BMC team that included Taylor Phinney and Cadel Evans.

Asked to explain the reason for his team’s success, Cavendish was to the point. “Two words, one name: Tony Martin,” he said, and then joked: “There are no real egos here except maybe me, but it was all about getting eight guys from point A to point B as quickly as possible. When a team time trial works out, it’s the best feeling in cycling.”

Impressive though Martin was, however, Cavendish himself has considerable pedigree in the discipline – he won Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España team time trials with HTC – and Omega Pharma-Quick Step could also count on Michal Kwiatkowski, Zdenek Stybar and Niki Terpstra.

Even though they were down to the bare five riders for the final kilometres, that quintet had the right blend of horsepower and cohesion, and they made light of the greasy conditions to take a convincing win. Three seconds up on the Movistar after 7.9km, Omega Pharma gradually padded their advantage in the finale, to win by 11 seconds.

“I can’t remember if I've done a team time trial in weather like that. Probably not so wet and technical but it was a good day,” Cavendish said. “We trained yesterday on the course in the pissing rain and this morning too. We knew what it was going to be like in the rain. It didn't matter about the weather, the guys wanted to keep practicing and practicing to get it right, and they certainly did. It was nice to be part of it."

Thanks to BMC’s third place, Cadel Evans is the best-placed of the out-and-out pre-race favourites, and while his gains were marginal, Tirreno-Adriatico is a race usually decided by seconds. A Dmitriy Gruzdev crash hindered Astana’s effort, but they still placed 5th at 20 seconds, meaning that Vincenzo Nibali yielded just four seconds to Evans.

Chris Froome and Sky were a lacklustre 7th, 25 seconds down, while Alberto Contador starts the race at a relative disadvantage after his Saxo-Tinkoff squad could only manage 8th at 32 seconds. “The differences are important, we lost 16 seconds with BMC and also lost time to Astana and Sky, who are direct rivals, but we cannot think that this is definitive,” Contador said. “It is true that these races are won or lost by a few seconds, but well, this is just beginning.”

The news was worse for his fellow countryman Joaquim Rodriguez: his Katusha team couldn’t reproduce its surprise showing from last year’s Giro d’Italia team time trial in Verona, and lost 44 seconds. “Honestly we expected a better result,” Rodriguez admitted. “We had a bad start, not taking the first corners at our best. A couple of times our group broke, and we lost two important riders such as Paolini and Kuchynski. Anyway, the most important thing was not to fall during this hard day: we'll see what we can do during the next stages."

Elsewhere, Fabian Cancellara gave yet another exhibition of how having such a powerful individual in your line-up can be a mixed blessing in a team event, as RadioShack Leopard could only place 10th at 36 seconds, with Andy Schleck dropped before the finish. Moreno Moser is considered something of a wildcard for the general classification, and Cannondale did his chances no harm with a workmanlike 4th place, 19 seconds down.

Speaking of dark horses, of course, Tony Martin finds himself in an ideal position before the action gets underway in earnest. The German will struggle to match the likes of Contador, Froome et al on the slopes of Prati di Tivo at the weekend, but with his current buffer and a short time trial on the final day in San Benedetto del Tronto, Martin has ample motivation to limit his losses in the mountains in the days ahead.

Before that, however, the sprinters ought to have their opportunities, with Thursday’s stage to Indicatore expected to see the first clash of the season between the blue jersey Cavendish and his great rival André Greipel (Lotto Belisol).

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Full Results
1Omega Pharma-Quick Step0:19:24
2Movistar Team0:00:11
3BMC Racing Team0:00:16
4Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:19
5Astana Pro Team0:00:20
7Sky Procycling0:00:25
8Team Saxo-Tinkoff0:00:29
10RadioShack Leopard0:00:36
11Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:00:37
12Team NetApp-Endura0:00:39
14Team Argos-Shimano0:00:51
15Lotto Belisol0:00:54
19Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:01:04
20Ag2R La Mondiale0:01:05
21Vini Fantini-Selle Italia0:01:06
22Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 21 - Cell 2
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General classification after stage 1
1Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step0:19:24
2Tony Martin (Ger) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 1 - Cell 2
3Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 2 - Cell 2
4Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 3 - Cell 2
5Niki Terpstra (Ned) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 4 - Cell 2
6Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team0:00:11
7Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 6 - Cell 2
8Andrey Amador Bakkazakova (CRc) Movistar TeamRow 7 - Cell 2
9Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 8 - Cell 2
10Eros Capecchi (Ita) Movistar TeamRow 9 - Cell 2
11Alex Dowsett (GBr) Movistar TeamRow 10 - Cell 2
12Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 11 - Cell 2
13Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team0:00:16
14Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing TeamRow 13 - Cell 2
15Stephen Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing TeamRow 14 - Cell 2
16Thor Hushovd (Nor) BMC Racing TeamRow 15 - Cell 2
17Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 16 - Cell 2
18Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:19
19Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 18 - Cell 2
20Damiano Caruso (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 19 - Cell 2
21Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 20 - Cell 2
22Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 21 - Cell 2
23Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 22 - Cell 2
24Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team0:00:20
25Fredrik Carl Wilhelm Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro TeamRow 24 - Cell 2
26Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 25 - Cell 2
27Valerio Agnoli (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 26 - Cell 2
28Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro TeamRow 27 - Cell 2
29Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 28 - Cell 2
30Sebastian Langeveld (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge0:00:24
31Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 30 - Cell 2
32Svein Tuft (Can) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 31 - Cell 2
33Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 32 - Cell 2
34Jens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 33 - Cell 2
35Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 34 - Cell 2
36Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Sky Procycling0:00:25
37Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky ProcyclingRow 36 - Cell 2
38Christian Knees (Ger) Sky ProcyclingRow 37 - Cell 2
39Dario Cataldo (Ita) Sky ProcyclingRow 38 - Cell 2
40Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky ProcyclingRow 39 - Cell 2
41Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Sky ProcyclingRow 40 - Cell 2
42Sergio Luis Henao Montoya (Col) Sky ProcyclingRow 41 - Cell 2
43Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff0:00:29
44Daniele Bennati (Ita) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 43 - Cell 2
45Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 44 - Cell 2
46Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 45 - Cell 2
47Manuele Boaro (Ita) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 46 - Cell 2
48Tiziano Dall'Antonia (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:32
49Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida0:00:35
50Adriano Malori (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 49 - Cell 2
51Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 50 - Cell 2
52Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 51 - Cell 2
53Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-MeridaRow 52 - Cell 2
54Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 53 - Cell 2
55Fabian Cancellara (Swi) RadioShack Leopard0:00:36
56Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack LeopardRow 55 - Cell 2
57Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack LeopardRow 56 - Cell 2
58Danilo Hondo (Ger) RadioShack LeopardRow 57 - Cell 2
59Christopher Horner (USA) RadioShack LeopardRow 58 - Cell 2
60Bauke Mollema (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:00:37
61Paul Martens (Ger) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 60 - Cell 2
62Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 61 - Cell 2
63Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 62 - Cell 2
64Lars Boom (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 63 - Cell 2
65Simone Stortoni (Ita) Lampre-Merida0:00:38
66Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 65 - Cell 2
67David De La Cruz Melgarejo (Spa) Team NetApp-Endura0:00:39
68Jan Barta (Cze) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 67 - Cell 2
69Bartosz Huzarski (Pol) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 68 - Cell 2
70Daniel Schorn (Aut) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 69 - Cell 2
71Paul Voss (Ger) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 70 - Cell 2
72Vladimir Isaichev (Rus) Katusha0:00:44
73Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) KatushaRow 72 - Cell 2
74Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) KatushaRow 73 - Cell 2
75Maxim Belkov (Rus) KatushaRow 74 - Cell 2
76Pavel Brutt (Rus) KatushaRow 75 - Cell 2
77Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) KatushaRow 76 - Cell 2
78Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:00:51
79Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 78 - Cell 2
80Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 79 - Cell 2
81John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 80 - Cell 2
82Matthieu Sprick (Fra) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 81 - Cell 2
83Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step0:00:54
84Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto BelisolRow 83 - Cell 2
85André Greipel (Ger) Lotto BelisolRow 84 - Cell 2
86Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto BelisolRow 85 - Cell 2
87Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto BelisolRow 86 - Cell 2
88Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Lotto BelisolRow 87 - Cell 2
89Bram Tankink (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:00:57
90Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin-SharpRow 89 - Cell 2
91Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-SharpRow 90 - Cell 2
92Thomas Dekker (Ned) Garmin-SharpRow 91 - Cell 2
93Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin-SharpRow 92 - Cell 2
94Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-SharpRow 93 - Cell 2
95Ignatas Konovalovas (Ltu) MTN-Qhubeka0:01:00
96Jacobus Venter (RSA) MTN-QhubekaRow 95 - Cell 2
97Jay Robert Thomson (RSA) MTN-QhubekaRow 96 - Cell 2
98Gerald Ciolek (Ger) MTN-QhubekaRow 97 - Cell 2
99Sergio Pardilla Bellon (Spa) MTN-QhubekaRow 98 - Cell 2
100Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN-QhubekaRow 99 - Cell 2
101Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ0:01:02
102Cédric Pineau (Fra) FDJRow 101 - Cell 2
103Sandy Casar (Fra) FDJRow 102 - Cell 2
104Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJRow 103 - Cell 2
105Mickael Delage (Fra) FDJRow 104 - Cell 2
106Laurent Mangel (Fra) FDJRow 105 - Cell 2
107Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:01:04
108Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 107 - Cell 2
109Mirko Selvaggi (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 108 - Cell 2
110Tomasz Marczynski (Pol) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 109 - Cell 2
111Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 110 - Cell 2
112Wouter Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 111 - Cell 2
113Ben Gastauer (Lux) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:05
114Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 113 - Cell 2
115Davide Appollonio (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 114 - Cell 2
116Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 115 - Cell 2
117Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 116 - Cell 2
118Matteo Rabottini (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia0:01:06
119Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 118 - Cell 2
120Francesco Failli (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 119 - Cell 2
121Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 120 - Cell 2
122Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 121 - Cell 2
123Jorge Azanza Soto (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 122 - Cell 2
124Robert Vrecer (Slo) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 123 - Cell 2
125Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 124 - Cell 2
126Ioannis Tamouridis (Gre) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 125 - Cell 2
127Garikoitz Bravo Oiarbide (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 126 - Cell 2
128Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 127 - Cell 2
129Klaas Lodewyck (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 128 - Cell 2
130José Joao Pimenta Costa Mendes (Por) Team NetApp-Endura0:01:09
131Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff0:01:10
132Oscar Gatto (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia0:01:17
133Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team0:01:22
134Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 133 - Cell 2
135Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin-Sharp0:01:26
136Stijn Devolder (Bel) RadioShack Leopard0:01:27
137Andy Schleck (Lux) RadioShack LeopardRow 136 - Cell 2
138Mauro Finetto (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia0:01:34
139Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar Team0:01:35
140Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) FDJ0:01:50
141Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Team NetApp-Endura0:01:54
142Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 141 - Cell 2
143Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 142 - Cell 2
144Maarten Wynants (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:02:05
145Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 144 - Cell 2
146Martin Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 145 - Cell 2
147Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Vini Fantini-Selle Italia0:02:10
148Olivier Kaisen (Bel) Lotto Belisol0:02:20
149Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:02:26
150Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Belisol0:02:27
151Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Lotto BelisolRow 150 - Cell 2
152Grega Bole (Slo) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:02:30
153Joseph Lloyd Dombrowski (USA) Sky Procycling0:02:31
154Martin Reimer (Ger) MTN-Qhubeka0:02:35
155Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:02:37
156Alan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:02:38
157Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Garmin-Sharp0:02:43
158Nick Nuyens (Bel) Garmin-SharpRow 157 - Cell 2
159Mitchell Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge0:02:47
160Miguel Minguez Ayala (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi0:02:48
161Ricardo Garcia Ambroa (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 160 - Cell 2
162Boy van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:02:55
163Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ0:02:56
164Andreas Stauff (Ger) MTN-Qhubeka0:02:57
165Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:03:07
166Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 165 - Cell 2
167Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team0:03:10
168Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 167 - Cell 2
169Hayden Roulston (NZl) RadioShack Leopard0:03:11
170Manuel Belletti (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:15
171Luca Paolini (Ita) Katusha0:03:20
172Aliaksandr Kuchynski (Blr) KatushaRow 171 - Cell 2
173Steve Chainel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:36
174Jesus Hernandez Blazquez (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff0:03:48
175Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 174 - Cell 2
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Best young rider classification
1Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step0:19:24
2Alex Dowsett (GBr) Movistar Team0:00:11
3Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team0:00:16
4Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling0:00:19
5Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 4 - Cell 2
6Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Sky Procycling0:00:25
7Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Sky ProcyclingRow 6 - Cell 2
8Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida0:00:35
9Adriano Malori (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 8 - Cell 2
10Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack Leopard0:00:36
11Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:00:37
12Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 11 - Cell 2
13David De La Cruz Melgarejo (Spa) Team NetApp-Endura0:00:39
14Daniel Schorn (Aut) Team NetApp-EnduraRow 13 - Cell 2
15Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:00:51
16John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 15 - Cell 2
17Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step0:00:54
18Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin-Sharp0:00:57
19Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-SharpRow 18 - Cell 2
20Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN-Qhubeka0:01:00
21Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ0:01:02
22Davide Appollonio (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:05
23Garikoitz Bravo Oiarbide (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi0:01:06
24Klaas Lodewyck (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 23 - Cell 2
25Joseph Lloyd Dombrowski (USA) Sky Procycling0:02:31
26Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:02:37
27Miguel Minguez Ayala (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi0:02:48
28Ricardo Garcia Ambroa (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 27 - Cell 2
29Boy van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:02:55
30Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ0:02:56

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