Dan Martin says Tour TTT went to plan apart from puncture

Posted on: July 9th, 2018

Irish rider Dan Martin has again said he feels very good at the Tour de France and is looking ahead. His team lost a lot of time in the stage 3 TTT won by BMC Racing, above.


Dan Martin was putting a brave face on losing time during the stage 3 TTT at the Tour de France.

The Irishman’s UAE Team Emirates squad was not fancied for the 35.5km test. And it performed poorly, losing significant time to many rival teams.

It finished 15th of the 22 teams in the race and lost 1:38 to winners BMC Racing.

“We went in with a plan and it worked well,” Martin said of the team’s race against the clock.

“The only real negative was the fact that Troia, who was brought in to help us in the team time trial, got a puncture after 9km.

“We brought him in specifically for today as he is a big strong guy. But he got a flat and we lost him.

“That maybe cost us 15 or 20 seconds at the finish line. Other than that, we all rode out of our skin.

“If you’d told me I’d only be 40 seconds off Froomey after the team time trial, I’d have been pretty happy.

“Obviously, I’m 1:40 behind G (Thomas) now. But I’m also ahead of Nairo. Overall, it’s not a bad start to the Tour for us.

“My glass is always half full. The sun’s out, it’s the Tour de France. All we can do is our best.

“I felt good and more of the same over the next days and we will see how far we can go. I’m taking it day by day and there are 18 days to go.”

While Martin’s team was well off the pace in the test in Cholet, the race was tight at the top.

Indeed 11 seconds split the best five teams. BMC, with general classification man Richie Porte in its ranks, recorded a time of 38:46.

That was just four seconds ahead of Team Sky and seven seconds better than QuickStep.

Mitchelton-Scott was 4th, at 9 seconds, and Team Sunweb was next a further two seconds adrift.


Top down: The new yellow jersey, Chris Froome, Team Sunweb.


The time loss is a serious blow to Dan Martin. However, he had gained 51 seconds on some of his rivals on the opening stage.

He finished in the depleted peloton as many of his rivals were caught in the second large group on the road after crashes.

But those gains were largely wiped out today. And the men who finished with him on stage 1 are now well ahead of Martin in the general standings as a result of the TTT.

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) now leads the race, though he is on the same time was team mate Tejay van Garderen.

Martin is in 39th position, some 1:38 off the yellow jersey. And his difficulty is that many of the men he is competing with for the top 10 overall, and maybe even the podium, are much closer to the race lead.

Geraint Thomas of Team Sky, for example, is 3rd overall at three seconds and so 1:35 up on Martin already.

Julian Alaphilippe (QuickStep) is 6th overall and 1:31 up on the Irishman. Potential race winner Tom Dumoulin is 7th, the Team Sunweb man already 1:27 up on Daniel Martin.

Another favourite, Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First-Drapac), is 10th some 1:03 up on Martin.

And so the list goes on; many of those who can climb as well as Martin and TT better than him now having ample time over him.

Though Porte lost 51 seconds to Martin on stage 1, he is now 47 seconds up on the Irish rider.

Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) also lost time on stage 1 but are now 43 and 38 seconds ahead of Martin.

However, despite slipping down the standings, Martin has said his legs feel great. And he will have plenty of chances to prove himself; the first of those coming very soon.

Tomorrow is a stage that should suits sprinters. But stages 5 and 6, on Wednesday and Thursday, feature multiple small climbs and inclines to finish; happy hunting ground for Dan Martin.


Stage 3: Cholet TTT (35.5km)

1 BMC Racing Team 0:38:46
2 Team Sky 0:00:04
3 Quick-Step Floors 0:00:07
4 Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:09
5 Team Sunweb 0:00:11
6 EF Education First-Drapac 0:00:35
7 Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:50
8 Astana Pro Team 0:00:51
9 Katusha-Alpecin 0:00:52
10 Movistar Team 0:00:53
11 Bahrain-Merida 0:01:06
12 AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:15
13 LottoNl-Jumbo
14 Trek-Segafredo 0:01:16
15 UAE Team Emirates 0:01:38
16 Groupama-FDJ 0:01:42
17 Fortuneo-Samsic 0:01:46
18 Direct Energie 0:01:51
19 Lotto Soudal 0:01:52
20 Dimension Data
21 Wanty-Groupe Gobert 0:02:24
22 Cofidis, Solutions Credits 0:03:23


General Classification

1 Greg Van Avermaet BMC Racing Team 9:08:55
2 Tejay van Garderen BMC Racing Team
3 Geraint Thomas Team Sky 0:00:03
4 Philippe Gilbert Quick-Step Floors 0:00:05
5 Bob Jungels Quick-Step Floors 0:00:07
6 Julian Alaphilippe Quick-Step Floors
7 Tom Dumoulin Team Sunweb 0:00:11
8 Søren Kragh Andersen Team Sunweb
9 Michael Matthews Team Sunweb
10 Rigoberto Uran EF Education First-Drapac 0:00:35
11 Rafal Majka Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:50
12 Daniel Oss Bora-Hansgrohe
13 Jakob Fuglsang Astana Pro Team 0:00:51
14 Richie Porte BMC Racing Team
15 Ilnur Zakarin Katusha-Alpecin 0:00:52
16 Alejandro Valverde Movistar Team 0:00:53
17 Mikel Landa Movistar Team
18 Chris Froome Team Sky 0:00:55
19 Taylor Phinney EF Education First-Drapac 0:00:56
20 Adam Yates Mitchelton-Scott 0:01:00
39 Daniel Martin UAE Team Emirates 0:01:38