Giro Di Adam: Happy High Road
Whilst the rest of Scotland’s manhood watched Glasgow Rangers play Zinit Saint Petersburg in the final of the Uefa soccer Cup final, our man Ed Hood gave his cell phone account another hammering, as he interviewed High Road’s Adam Hansen on the day that Oleg Tinkoff’s dream finally came true, thanks to Pavel Brutt.
PEZ: Cav joins the elite, Adam?
Adam: Yeah, he says it’s his biggest win, but he said the best thing about it was the way the team worked for him.
He was climbing well, but faded with a kilometre to go on the second last ascent; the whole team went back for him.
He was in the third group and we drove it up to the second group, then right up to the leaders.
On the last climb he went off again but we got him back; with eight to go we were at the front driving, but it was a bit of a headwind so we eased and Lampre gave us some help.
With four K to go Bradley put in a huge spell, then I picked it up from the 2.5 mark to about 1.6 – it sounds a long way but there were a lot of corners so it wasn’t that bad!
Tony Martin did a great final turn and delivered him to the finish.
PEZ: Is he cockier than usual?
Adam: I don’t think he can get any cockier! I’ve seen him cockier after smaller wins though.
PEZ: Was there champagne?
Adam: Yes, we had a celebration; it’s good for morale and the pressure is off us now, no matter what happens, we’ve had a good Giro.
Mark wants to win another stage though, he’s going to quit after stage 13, but there are a couple of opportunities for him before that.
PEZ: How are the hotels and the pasta?
Adam: The food is always great; some of the hotels are a little behind the times, but they are OK.
To tell you the truth though, with the long transfers you’re just happy to get a bed! Two nights ago, we got to the hotel at 11.10 and dinner was at 11.30.
PEZ: What are High Road’s goals for the race?
Adam: For Mark to win stages and a good GC for Morris Possoni and Marco Pinotti.
Marco has high hopes; Morris is fourth on GC and has the leader’s jersey in the young rider competition, but we’ll have to wait and see how things progress.
PEZ: Possoni is the surprise.
Adam: Yeah, at the start of the season I didn’t really know him and I’m still not sure about his history and palmares.
The first race I rode with him was Romandie and he was very strong; he showed great strength, winning the sprint jersey, despite the fact that he’s lightly built – of course he’s a good climber too.
PEZ: What are the differences between the T-Mobile and High Road set-ups?
Adam: The colour! I think that the main thing is that some of the other teams treat us differently, even although the attitude in the team is just the same, we drive and do our share of the work to demonstrate that we are a strong, committed team.
I think that some of the other teams treat us differently though, because we no longer have the budget that we did with T-Mobile. And I suppose we have to face the fact that the future is uncertain for us all.
PEZ: Was it an ‘energy saver’ day for you today?
Adam: It was one of the easiest race days of my life! There was a 10 K climb with 35 K to go and Mark wanted an easy day, so Bradley and I stayed with him to the finish.
PEZ: Brad is riding a quiet race.
Adam: He’s targeting the time trials, but I think that only the last one will suit him. He’s not riding the Tour, because of the proximity to the Olympics, so there are his base miles for Beijing.
PEZ: Was it dangerous in the wet today?
Adam: Not for us, we were in the sprinters group at the back by the time the rains came; but if you’re in a big bunch in the rain here, it’s very dangerous – the roads become incredibly slippery.
PEZ: A long stage tomorrow?
Adam: It’s been cut! The riders don’t mind riding however many kilometres place to place, but when a loop is added at the finish for no good reason that they can see, then they start to complain.
PEZ: Who’s impressive at this stage?
Adam: I think you should ask me that question later in the race; Ricco’s win was predictable, so were those by Mark and Bennati, but I have to admit that we were surprised the break stayed away today.
PEZ: When will the ‘explosion’ come?
Adam: The Plan De Corones mountain time trial – stage 16, will be a real turning point.
They are predicting a time of 40 minutes for the winner; if the time cut is 20% then that’s less than 10 minutes – that’s not a big gap between the top guys and the lesser riders on a hill like that.
If they stick to the time limit then 40 or 50 guys could be out.
The day before will be a hard one too, five climbs over 2,000 metres – the GC guys will really sort themselves out that day!
Adam will be keeping us posted as the Giro winds north, towards those ancient coral reefs that are now – the Dolomites, and the big show downs.
Keep it PEZZED!