Team Sunweb put in a strong team time trial effort in Stage 3 of the Tour de France Monday, propelling 23-year-old Søren Kragh Andersen into the overall lead in the young rider’s classification. Riding their Trinity Advanced Pro TT bikes, the team finished fifth in the 35.5km team time trial in Cholet.
The strong result also placed the team’s general classification leader Tom Dumoulin into seventh place overall, allowing the Dutch rider to gain time against key GC rivals in the three-week grand tour.
“We had a really good structure and rhythm in the team,” said Kragh Andersen after the race. “We have protocols on how to do TTTs so all staff, riders, trainers and coaches know what to do. We’re professional about it and have invested in guys to improve this discipline, and now the hard work and planning has paid off. It’s super nice to have the white jersey and I’m really happy with it. I wasn’t expecting it so I’m a little overwhelmed. Tomorrow I still have my job to do and that will be the focus.”
Dumoulin, the current world champion in the time trial discipline, was the main engine and the leader with the team on the rolling course in Cholet. “Technically everything went perfect,” he said. “We were very close to the victory and could not wish for more outside of the win. I’m happy about the GC consequences. In a TTT you really have to go for it with all of us as a team. It went so fast and we had small differences in the turns.”
In addition to the Trinity Advanced Pro TT bikes, the team also wore Giant Rivet TT helmets and rode prototype rear wheels from Giant that are being developed in partnership with Team Sunweb staff and riders.
The three-week Tour de France continues Tuesday with Stage 4, the first of three stages in the Brittany region. The 195km route from La Baule to Sarzeau is mostly flat and presents a good opportunity for a sprint finish.