So close, yet so far for Madison Genesis as Tour of Britain breakaway comes close to succeeding

British team looking to save energy on time trial for breakaway opportunities that lie ahead.

Alexandre Blain leads the breakaway on stage four of the Tour of Britain
(Image credit: Andy Jones)

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Madison Genesis road captain Alexandre Blain insists that the team will keep on plugging away in the breakaway, after coming within three kilometres of holding on to the finish on Wednesday's Tour of Britain stage into Newark-on-Trent.

Blain himself was at the forefront of the action finding himself in the breakaway alongside team-mate Richard Handley, An Post-Chain Reaction's Jacob Scott, JLT Condor's Alistair Slater and Wanty-Groupe Gobert's Mark McNally.

>>> Fernando Gaviria holds off Elia Viviani to win Tour of Britain stage four sprint finish

However, the move was caught just three kilometres from the finish.

"It was really close, and yet really far at the same time," Blain admitted.

"There were just three kilometres left, but it was a big thing to do. We will definitely keep trying, as getting in the breakaway is the main target for our team this week and trying to force our luck."

With limited out-and-out sprint options for the Milton Keynes-based team on a very flat course, the British outfit know that the breakaway gives them the best chance of securing that elusive stage win.

"It's the only chance that we have to win a stage with the top class sprinters that are here," said the former Cofidis rider.

"On the GC there isn't any chance for us other than going in the breakaway. Which is what we've done perfectly today with Rich [Handley]."

In spite of team mate Richard Handley's tenth place position on GC at the moment, Blain admits that Thursday's 16-kilometre time trial around Clacton-on-Sea holds little opportunity for the team.

"We were kidding about how it was going to be an active recovery day, because we know we cannot compete with the top time triallists," he said. "Even Rich in tenth position, has got nearly no chance to get a decent GC finish on a flat course like this. So it's just a case of getting round within the time limit which isn't going to be so simple."

>>> Tour of Britain 2017: stage five time trial start times

If the Madison-Genesis riders get through today's unofficial "Club-10 World Championships" unscathed, Blain expects further breakaway opportunities to arise against tired legs in the coming days.

"We need to be focused but not going full gas so we can try and save our legs for the last few stages where we will get back to business against some tired domestiques of the bigger teams, so we may have more of a chance on the last three stages."

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