GreenEDGE aiming for perfect cycling finish at world cycling titles
Stuff the silver, Orica-GreenEDGE is chasing gold in Sunday’s gruelling 53.2km team time trial at the world road cycling titles in the Netherlands.
STUFF the silver, Orica-GreenEDGE is chasing gold in Sunday’s gruelling 53.2km team time trial at the world road cycling titles in the Netherlands.
Team director Matt White said winning the event in the hilly Limburg terrain would be the perfect finish to the Australian outfit’s impressive debut season.
“We are going there to win,” White told AAP from the Netherlands.
“We will be disappointed if we don’t podium for sure and we have a team that can win.
“If all the boys deliver on the day, it is going to take a very, very good team to beat us.”
It will be the first time since 1994 that there has been a team time trial at the world titles with trade teams providing a different flavour to the championships.
There is a degree of the unknown attached to the race with the 53.2km course much longer than most team time trials and the hills will stretch the riders.
White believed Cauberg Hill, with its summit just under two kilometres before the finish, had the potential to cause teams to implode following a challenging hour in the seat.
The Orica-GreenEDGE team will consist of Australians Luke Durbridge and Cameron Meyer, Canada’s Svein Tuft, New Zealand’s Sam Bewley and the Dutch pair of Sebastian Langeveld and Jens Mouris.
“We will have two days on the course plus we have seen the course with video,” White said.
“It won’t be a surprise come Sunday.”
The event opens the world titles that will finish on 23 September.
Shara Gillow, 24, will be Australia’s great hope in Tuesday’s 24.3km women’s time trial while Durbridge will be attempting to force his way onto the podium in the men’s 45.7 km event on Wednesday.
After missing out on London Olympic selection on the track, last year’s Under-23 world time trial champion Durbridge has taken out his frustration on the road.
“I have been watching him the past few weeks in training and he is flying,” said White.
Meyer will also contest the event with three-time world champion Michael Rogers having opted not to compete.
Rogers is a 50-50 chance of riding in the road race after being struck down by tonsilitis.
The women’s 129km road race is on September 22 and the men’s 267km event the following day.
Australia’s men’s team will be missing big guns Cadel Evans, Matt Goss and Stuart O’Grady with the testing course expected to suit Belgian star Philippe Gilbert.
However in-form Simon Gerrans, who last weekend won the Grand Prix of Quebec, is rated a good chance of making it four straight podium finishes for Australians in the blue-ribbon event. – AAP