Wiggins ready to roll at the time trial

May 11, 2014
Category: General  Stage 2 

Although Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) is in yellow tonight, all eyes will be on Sir Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) tomorrow. The gold medal winner at the 2012 Olympic time trial will be on his turf at the crucial Stage 2 time trial in Folsom. The 2012 Tour de France champ let it known to all at Friday’s press conference that he’s here to win the Amgen Tour of California and he’s nursing some serious form to back it up.

When there was a split in the field due to a powerful crosswind during today’s Stage 1, Wiggo was seen at the front driving the tempo trying to pry open more time. The effort will likely prime his legs for Monday’s effort on a 12.5 mile course that is primarily flat with only a slight rise towards the end.

Stage 2 is the earliest the time trial stage has ever taken place in the nine editions of this race. Organizers seemed to plan the route deliberately to cause dramatic shifts in the GC during the first three stages. Today’s opening stage favors the sprinters. After the time trial specialists ply their trade, Stage 3 is a mountaintop finish for the climbers on Mount Diablo. If Wiggins can take yellow tomorrow, he does possess the ability and the fitness to keep it on his shoulders come Tuesday night.

In this world-class field, there are others who can time trial, including reigning U.S. National Time Trial champion Tom Zirbel (Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies). Another American, BMC’s Taylor Phinney is another strong contender on a course tailor made for his abilities. The race of truth sometimes brings surprises so we will see what happens at this important rendezvous tomorrow, but expect the British reign to continue.