He said he let go as soon as he found out the pace was too high, which irks me a bit considering you never know what could happen in the front group. Looks like he didn't even try, which is imho damning. Had he tried (and succeeded) he could have helped Wout a lot. Or maybe he felt it was really "over" but that doesn't fall in line with his statements saying his legs felt good.It was a disappointing effort, especially on the Mikuni Pass.
Maybe he didn't try hard, which would be unlike the teamplayer he claims to be.
The TT will tell us more about his form, but I feel like he's still way off his pre-crash level. The national TT showed that clearly.
There's no way he would have lost to Lampaert by 20 seconds before his crash.
It's obvious that TdF participation was a big plus today, but Schachmann was a good contender, so it isn't much of an excuse.
On the other hand, look at where other big names finished. Roglic, Sivakov, Martin, Bennett, Caruso not that much better. Kelderman, Nibali, Valverde, Dumoulin, Porte in the same group. Higuita, Vlasov, Foss even further back. Vlasov and Foss also rode the Giro and were the revelations in GC.
He lost the ITT from Yves because he wasn't 100% yet. Because Yves was in great shape. Because Yves was riding in his hometown, knowing every corner by heart and getting cheered on by the locals. Because the course was rather technical with a lot of twists and turns, with short straights and many short climbs (bridges), where acceleration/punch mattered a lot, which we know is not his forte. Only by gaining a fraction of a second in every corner, Yves would have won this by a clear margin. He finished 40s ahead of Van Wilder who had finished his latest WT ITT's very strong. That gap seems "about right" considering their past results.