The hats off award for today goes to out climbing pain craving specialist christiano salerno. He made one of those breakaways that includes only superstars today and in the process charged up all the climbs and all but secured the king of the mountain jersey! So an awesome performance by him.
For me it was an improved day. After my cocky attitude yesterday decided to play my cards a bit smarter and retreated to the protection of the peleton for the final climb. I sat patient why sky used there men and waited for the inevitable fierce tempo setting of rigoberto uran which duly happened between 8-5km to go. I survived this just and made the final major selection. This was as good as it got for me however as when katusha took up the pace setting inside the final few km I was the first one to be unhitched from the group of superstars (that being all the other guys and not including me) just inside 2km to go. Today I held my nerve better and kept the group and my pace in check. At the line I was 15th, and losing 40seconds to the likes of wiggins, gesink and van den brook. After 6hrs of racing and 2 20+km climbs in the final 60km of the race I see this as a real test of my endurance level at the moment and I am content with where I am at. Specially being my first race of the season basically. The most important thing is not where I arrived today but how I go away from here and use this weeks experience to continue to progress throughout the rest of the season.
Heart rate average: 140
Power average: 290
Max power: 1110
Calories burnt 6500kcal
Best 5min power: 490watts
What makes me really happy is that some of the data from todays race is up there with my best previous efforts so to be finally able to deliver this in a race is a huge step forward for me. For to long I have had no dramas training hard but not matched that level of effort in the race. Today the tables finally have started to turn and to do it also on the longest hardest stage of the race gives me great confidence going forward.
Time to refuel the tank for another intensive day tomorrow
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device