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Tour riders prepare for extreme temperatures


UPDATED | The Tour Down Under will decide after stage two what action to take as the temperature soars.

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The forecast high for today’s second stage in the Adelaide Hills was 37 degrees and it is tipped to reach 41 on the following two days.

It should drop to the low 30s for Saturday’s Queen Stage at Willunga and the last stage on Sunday in Adelaide.

The opening stage of last year’s Tour was shortened because of the heat.

Australian Adam Hansen (Lotto-Soudal) is the riders’ representative and he will meet with race director Mike Turtur.

Mitchelton-Scott director Matthew White will represent the teams and chief commissaire Wayne Pomario will also be involved.

“The advantage of tomorrow is there are laps in the final, it’s very easy (to cut the race short),” Hansen said.

“He’s organised the race knowing from last year, it’s best to have these safety measures.

“He’s open for it, which is really good for the riders.”

Hansen, from Queensland, is not worried about the conditions but internationals in the field are enduring a shock to their system.

“I love the heat, so no problem, but it’s about everyone here,” he said.

The 148.6km second stage features three finishing laps of a hilly circuit at Stirling.

Hansen’s teammate Andre Greipel is the race leader after his outstanding stage-one win.

“We’re not going to put too much pressure on ourselves – not that he can’t win, but he’s never won (at Stirling) … it’s a bit too hard,” Hansen said.

“There are a lot of other guys who are better chances than us.

“To get that win early means the pressure is really off our shoulders.”

The powerful Bora-Hansgrohe team have a decision to make during the stage, with Australian Jay McCarthy and superstar Peter Sagan genuine contenders for the win.

“Today’s stage really suits him, so we’ll talk out on the road,” McCarthy, who won at Stirling two years ago, said of Sagan.

“Of course, if I want to have a little go at the overall, I can’t lose too much time anyway.”

Australians Will Clarke (Drapac) and Scott Bowden (UniSA) were in the early break again on Wednesday, joined by Spaniard Jaime Castrillo (Movistar).


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