Michael Hepburn, known in the peloton as “Heppy”, became the first leader of the 54th edition of Tirreno-Adriatico as he took his team Mitchelton-Scott to victory in the opening team time trial in Lido di Camaiore. Last on the road, the Australian squad beat the time of hot favorites Team Jumbo-Visma by seven seconds. Team Sunweb rounded the podium with a deficit of 22 seconds.
1 – Mitchelton – Scott, 21.5km in 22’25”, average speed 57.546kph
2 – Team Jumbo – Visma at 7″
3 – Team Sunweb at 22″
1 – Michael Hepburn (Mitchelton – Scott)
2 – Brent Bookwalter (Mitchelton – Scott) s.t.
3 – Luke Durbridge (Mitchelton – Scott) s.t.
The first Maglia Azzurra, Michael Hepburn, said: “Who would cross the line first isn’t something we talked about before racing. We just rode for winning. It was my turn after Alex [Edmondson] and I was first on the line but there was no plan for that. We have a really strong team here at Tirreno-Adriatico and today’s stage suited us as well. Adam [Yates] looks in a really good shape. We’re ready to support him.”
Best young rider, Laurens De Plus said: “We’re very disappointed. After we won the last Team Time Trial in the UAE Tour, the expectations were very high. We wanted to win here also. Being beaten by only seven seconds is frustrating. We made some mistakes, myself included, in the last part of the race. Maybe that’s why we’ve lost. It’s still a good position to be in with regards to the overall classification, with Team Sky and Deceuninck-Quick Step quite far behind. The battle isn’t over yet.”
Stage 2 – Camaiore-Pomarance 195km
Discover the route od the 2nd stage. Click here.
Larderello and boraciferous heads
The metalic-rich hills of Pomarance, Larderello – with their “soffioni” boraciferous shower heads – produce 10% of the world’s geothermal energy (4800 GWh per year) supplying many Italian homes. The name of Larderello is in homage to François Jacques de Larderel, who founded the boraciferous plant. In 1905, thanks to Prince Piero Ginori-Conti, the energy of the heads began to be used for generating electricity. Larderello hosts a Geothermal Museum, dedicated to the industrial activity linked to terrestrial heat.
Stage 2 of the Tirreno-Adriatico NamedSport International TV Schedule available here.