Langeveld notes strong team performance as key to Tirreno opening win
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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Langeveld notes strong team performance as key to Tirreno opening win

by Bjorn Haake at 2:53 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Dutchman happy with his own performance

sebastian langeveldThe Rabobank team was the first to start the 2011 Tirreno-Adriatico, the first to finish and the team to climb on the highest podium spot after the opening team trial. The warm-up at 48 km/h was followed by a strong performance at around 55km/h. Sebastian Langeveld formed part of the winning team and was quite happy with the effort of himself and by his teammates.

Langeveld noted that everybody on the Rabobank squad was riding well within their expectations. "That is really a win by the team," he said on "A top team presentation. I did not see anybody screw up." The Rabobank team was covering the almost 17 kilometers like a well-oiled machine. "Everybody was top and everybody did very good exchanges. I have never been part of a machine like that."

Langeveld is certain that the hard training the team members put in since December are the major factor. "Of course the atmosphere in the team is tremendous, but that alone cannot be the deciding factor," he said. "We are becoming stronger and that of course is not coming through morale alone - even though it is a fundamental part of it."

Langeveld was content with his own showing. "I think I did good pulls," he said. "The legs felt well. After the openings weekend [Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne races -ed.] I took some rest and it shows now that this was a good choice. If you can give a contribution like this in such a time trial, then you are doing well."

Langeveld said he would have been unhappier if he would have ended with the front part of the Rabobank team, but not being able to do his share of work. He was well aware that some of his teammates dropped back before the finish. But that was not because they were too weak. "I saw that with other guys. Maarten Wynants came in much later, but he was riding very strongly. Oscar Freire was also doing very strong pulls."

In the team time trial, the time of the fifth rider is taken. So it can be beneficial to use riders who aren't going for the overall for strong pulls and then have them drop back. The dropped riders will get their respective time and the only thing they need to ensure is that they make the time cut.

Tirreno traditionally offers some sprint finishes, so having an in-form Freire is good for Rabobank. "We can pull something off this week," Langeveld said.


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