Team time trials, the first stage of the Tour of Alberta, was a very tight race for the top two teams. American team Trek Factory Racing took the top spot, less than half a second ahead of Australian team Orica Greenedge.
Bauke Mollema from the Netherlands earned the yellow leaders jersey with the Trek Factory Racing Team. He says they didn’t expect to beat Orica Greenedge as the World Tour team is a strong one.
“They’ve won team time trials before so I was just really happy to beat them. It was really close and the team rode really well and the guys were really strong. It was hard with five guys but looking at the intermediate times and the time at the finish, that’s where we gained a lot of time so that’s really nice.”
Mollema says even though they were riding the course on different bikes than they normally would, he was a fan.
“I actually liked it more than on the time trial bike. It’s a bit different, the speed is a little bit slower, but you can go faster in the corners. It was nice.”
Teammate Matthew Busche says Mollema’s strength as a racer provided even more motivation for the team to work together and earn the best time in the team time trial.
“Any win is motivating for a team but winning something like this where it is, from the start, straight on, a team effort with everybody pouring all they’ve got into it, it’s just a little bit different than if you were to win just a standard road stage so I think this is really special.”
The Trek Racing Team finished with a time of 22’57″10. Orica Greenedge was just a fraction of a second behind with a time of 22’57″33. In third place was Team Katusha from Russia, who finished at 23’05″08.
Two Canadian cyclists riding with Orica Greenedge earned jerseys at the end of Stage One. Christian Meier was awarded the Sprint Jersey while Svein Tuft earned the Jersey for Best Canadian.