Tour de France: Defending champion Evans thirteenth, but nets best-ever prologue performance
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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Tour de France: Defending champion Evans thirteenth, but nets best-ever prologue performance

by Shane Stokes at 4:40 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
Australian not concerned with dropping ten seconds to rival Wiggins

Cadel EvansDefending Tour de France champion Cadel Evans may have finished outside of the top ten in today’s prologue of the Tour de France, dropping ten seconds to his chief rival Bradley Wiggins, but said afterwards that his thirteenth place didn’t cause him much concern.

Describing it as ‘not good, but not bad,’ he has good reason to be sanguine about the result: the performance is actually his best-ever prologue result in the Tour.

After netting 35th in the long time trial in 2005, Evans was fourteenth in Strasbourg in 2006, seventeenth in London in 2007 and 23rd in Rotterdam in 2010.

There was no prologue in 2008 and 2011 and while he was fifth in Monaco three years ago, that test was a real time trial at 15.5 kilometres and doesn’t classify as a prologue.

Comparing like with like, prologue effort with prologue effort, today’s result is the closest he has got to a top ten finish in the short dash against the clock. It suggests that his form is precisely where it needs to be at this moment.

“You never want to lose time to any GC (general classification) rider and I lost time to one, but I was sort of expecting that,” he said, referring to Wiggin’s ten second gain in finishing second.

The Briton is a former world and Olympic pursuit champion, though, and so it is logical that such a short-burst would suit him better.

Evans is pragmatic about the result, recognising that there’s a huge amount of distance yet to be covered. “It's six kilometers out of 3,500 or so, so in that regard it's a small comparison. I'm happy to get things started and I'm feeling good."

Tomorrow’s stage may give a better insight into how the two are going compared to each other. The line at Seraing comes at the top of a long, steep drag and will be a small testing of climbing form at this early point


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