Phonak put Perdi into Volta lead

Phonak win the opening team time trial at the Tour of Catalonia and put defending champion Miguel An

Phonak win the opening team time trial at the Tour of Catalonia and put defending champion Miguel An

PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM

Phonak have won the opening team time trial stage of the Volta a Catalunya in Salou. The Swiss team's time of 21-43 for the 20km course put them seven seconds ahead of Discovery Channel, with T-Mobile another eight seconds further back in third place.

Phonak's first rider across the line was defending Volta champion Miguel Angel Martin Perdiguero, who will start tomorrow's stage based on the town of Cambrils as race leader. The stage features three second-cat and one third-cat climb, but more serious tests lie ahead during three days in the Pyrenees.

Perdiguero said after the stage that his objective this week is a stage win and to help either Floyd Landis or Santiago Botero in the battle for the overall prize. Asked how the TTT went for him, the eminently quotable Perdi commented: "I only went to the front for 50 or 100 metres on each turn. Robert Hunter was on the front for a kilometre or a kilometre and a half and wouldn't let me past. They were all going like motorbikes - Landis, Hunter, Santos [Gonzalez] and Botero."

Stage 1, Salou team time trial

1 Phonak Hearing Systems 20.1km in 21.43
2 Discovery Channel 0.07
3 T-Mobile 0.15
4 Illes Balears 0.16
5 Cofidis 0.17
6 Liquigas-Bianchi 0.18
7 Gerolsteiner 0.19
8 Crdit Agricole 0.23

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