Team Novo Nordisk Races Against the Clock at Abu Dhabi Tour
24 February 2018
Race: Abu Dhabi Tour, Stage 4 (ITT)
Start/Finish: Al Maryah Island/Al Maryah Island, United Arab Emirates
Distance: 12.6 kilometers
Al Maryah Island, UAE – The Team Novo Nordisk squad rode their first individual time trial of the 2018 season on Saturday, taking to the road solo for a short, twisting and blustery race against the clock amid Abu Dhabi’s sleek post-modern skyscrapers.
Riding forcefully but with caution in the wind, Finnish rider Joonas Henttala finished the 12.6km course with an average speed of 45.5km, navigating the out-and-back loop with an even split of left and right hand turns on a wide, 3-lane boulevard that serves the central business district and a seaside dining and shopping promenade in the capital of the United Emirates.
With a full season of racing ahead, Team Novo Nordisk broke out their Colnago K-Zero time trial bikes on Saturday for the first competition of the year, adapting to the aerodynamic pedaling positions and pacing of the race with an eye towards gathering measurement data for future corrections and improvement.
Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing Team) won the stage, completing the course in 14:21 and moving to first in the General Classification. David Lozano finished best for Team Novo Nordisk at 16:09, 1:48 behind Dennis.
Multiple national and world champions also lined up on Saturday as the Abu Dhabi Tour shifted from three straight days of group sprint finishes. On Sunday the race concludes with a summit finish in Jebel Hafeet.
“Time trials are all about suffering. You can train for it, but you have to get used to the aerodynamic tuck and the new pedaling position. I like all kinds of time trial courses, and today was tricky because it had crosswinds, headwinds and tailwinds. On a road bike you can put power on the pedals from almost any position, but in the TT bike you need to prepare for it.”
1st: Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing Team): 14:21
2nd: Jonathan Castroviejo (Team Sky): 0:14 behind Dennis
3rd: Miles Scotson (BMC Racing Team) 0:16 behind Dennis
99th: David Lozano: 1:48 behind Dennis
(Photos: ©TDWSport/Getty Images)