Team Jumbo-Visma looks back on the opening time trial of the Giro with mixed feelings. The 15.1 kilometre long time trial from Monreale to Palermo immediately caused big differences between some general classification riders. The wind was a determining factor in this. Steven also had to deal with this. Tobias Foss proved his worth by finishing fifth in the race against the clock.
On the Italian island of Sicily, the treacherous wind created special scenes. Halfway through the time trial, the wind changed direction, so that the later starters, including many general classification riders, could no longer set a top time. The brand new time trial world champion Flilipo Ganna won in his home country. By doing so he clinched the first pink jersey.
Sports director Addy Engels had noticed the changed wind. “We deliberately chose to let Steven start later. We knew the strong gusts would diminish later in the afternoon. We can conclude that it was the wrong choice. It was not expected that the wind would still shift like that. Steven rode a solid time trial. There is nothing to worry about.”
Afterwards Steven was also amazed by the changed wind. “The direction of the wind was very different than during the recon. It was really hard to get the right speed. I finished close to many other GC men. So I was not the only one. It is a shame that I lost a lot of time on Geraint Thomas in particular, but there are still plenty of opportunities for us to come. We know what to do now.”