Adam and Simon Yates will race the Tour de France for the first time together starting this Saturday in the Netherlands. The British twins were named this morning as part of Orica-GreenEdge nine-rider roster.
Simon raced the first 15 days of the Tour in 2014, in his first year as a professional. Adam, instead, will have his first opportunity to race after competing in his first grand tour, the Vuelta a España, last year.
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This season, Adam finished ninth in the Tirreno-Adriatico behind Colombian Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and Simon mixed it with the Tour favourites at the Critérium du Dauphiné last month, finishing fifth behind Chris Froome (Team Sky).
Instead of racing for the classification, they will race for stage victories over the next three weeks.
“I think it would be pretty irresponsible for us to put pressure on 22-year-olds, as second year pros, to ride general classification at the Tour de France,” Sports Director Matt White said.
“For both of them, it’s the first Tour de France they are aiming on finishing and so the plan is to gain more experience at the highest level in our sport.
“What they have proven this year is that they have the ability to be very competitive on a lot of varied terrains and against the best riders in the world.
“We are aiming to win a stage with them. If they can hunt out the right move, then on any given day they certainly have the ability to win.”
The twins were named alongside Simon Gerrans, Michael Matthews, Michael Albasini, Daryl Impey, Pieter Weening, Svein Tuft and Luke Durbridge.
Australian Matthews has sprinted to stage wins and wore the leader’s jersey in both the Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España, but never raced the Tour. Last year, he was due to start but crashed four days before the race.
He will help Gerrans hunt for stage wins. Weening and Albasini will work alongside the Yates twins in the mountains. After winning the Giro’s team time trial, Orica will likely aim for the Tour’s event on stage nine.
“This is the most well rounded and balanced team we have ever sent to a Grand Tour,” White said.
“We have a lot of opportunities right throughout the three weeks, where as at Tour’s in the past we haven’t had guys who can win high mountain stages.
“The goal for us is stage victories and because of the quality of this team, everyone will be given a chance to win a stage. With so many options right across the board, the month ahead is a pretty exciting prospect.”
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