Tour de France: Chris Froome 'hoped for better' in stage one time trial
Team Sky rider admits heat made a 'huge difference'
Last Updated: 05/07/15 7:11pm
Chris Froome admitted he had "hoped for better" in the Tour de France's opening-stage time trial and said the hot conditions affected him.
The Team Sky rider finished 39th on the day, 50 seconds behind winner and first race leader Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing), and lost seven seconds to 2014 Tour winner Vincenzo Nibali (Astana).
He gained eight and 11 seconds respectively on his other two main rivals for overall victory, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar), but felt he could have gone faster on the 13.8km course around Utrecht.
He told Sky Sports News HQ: "That was pretty tough out there for such a short course. I'm happy to have it out of the way now.
"I think in terms of GC [general classification] contenders, we are all pretty much within the same kind of ball park there. Of course, I would have hoped for a bit better start, but there is not much in it at the moment.
"The heat made a huge difference. It was really hot out there. Everyone was feeling the heat quite a bit, but I would much rather it is like this than the other way."
Froome prefers longer time trials and admitted that the short course did not play to his style.
He added: "The longer efforts suit me. The longer efforts are what I have really spent a lot of time training for, to be good up in the mountains, so this was a bit different from that but definitely a good lung-opener ahead of what is to come."
Several riders complained about the heat on the day, which saw temperatures rise up into the mid-30s.
Pre-stage favourite Tony Martin (Etixx – Quick-Step), who finished second, said he was "cooking" during his ride, while Froome's Team Sky team-mate Richie Porte admitted the heat had ruined his performance.
He said: "It was absolutely horrible. It was so hot. It's nice to get the Tour started - that is probably the only positive I can take out of today."
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