Adam Yates climbed with Alberto Contador, Nairo Quintana and Vincenzo Nibali, and placed ninth overall in the Tirreno-Adriatico in 2015. This year, he wanted to win the Italian stage race. Instead, with the cancelled queen stage today, he has no chance and says he fells “frustrated.”
RCS Sport cancelled the stage the summit finish stage to Monte San Vicino last night because of predicted cold rain and snow on the four climbs. Director Mauro Vegni said, “We decided not to risk the riders’ health.” The bad weather never arrived, however.
Instead, the teams were left to with an unusual rest day in a short week-long race. Yates and his team-mates rode the two hours from last night’s hotel to today’s, going from the Umbria to Marche region in central Italy.
“Snowman? There wasn’t snow here to make one,” Yates told Cycling Weekly when asked about the weather conditions.
“You have to respect what the organiser says. It’s a tough choice to make. You don’t want to have a situation like Paris-Nice on Wednesday, where the riders are on the side of the road in the snow.
“I was pretty frustrated at the same time because it was the first big goal of the early season for me. I fought through half of the race. I’ve spent the last two days risking my life, so it’s pretty frustrating really to have this stage cancelled.”
Yates said that he hopes the organiser always has a workable plan B route ready to race in the case of bad weather.
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The Englishman from Bury sits 20th overall behind leader Zdenek Stybar (Etixx–Quick-Step). It will be a fight for him to keep that spot.
Last year, he sat sixth overall after climbing through the snow to finish the summit finish stage with Contador. He slid to ninth in the final 10.05-kilometre time trial. After a flat stage tomorrow, he faces the same time trial along the east coast in San Benedetto del Tronto on Tuesday.
“I’m pretty excited about this time trial, just to get out there and use it as an effort to gauge my improvements,” said Yates. He said at the start of the race that over the winter, he worked on getting used to staying firm in his saddle and producing power.
With the Tirreno-Adriatico opportunity gone, Yates now looks towards two more stage races: The Tour of the Basque Country at the start of April and the Tour de Romandie later that month.