There were last-minute negotiations before the start of stage three in the Tour Down Under as some riders sought a shorter race because of the heat.
Cycling Central

17 Jan 2019 - 5:52 PM  UPDATED 17 Jan 2019 - 5:54 PM

Riders lobbied unsuccessfully to shorten stage three of the Tour Down Under because of the ongoing heat concerns.

After last-minute talks at the Lobethal start line, riders representative Adam Hansen (Lotto Soudal) and teams representative Matt White (Mitchelton-Scott)  initially reported that the stage would be shortened by one of the seven finishing laps at Uraidla.

But less than 10 minutes later, race radio announced that a majority of the teams had decided that the stage should remain at 146.2km.

Hansen and White had spoken for several minutes with race director Mike Turtur and other team bosses.

Stage two in the Barossa was shortened because of the heat, but conditions are slightly cooler for stage three in the Adelaide Hills.

The stage ended with seven laps of a tough 14km circuit and riders lobbied for two of those laps to be taken out.

"We've just made a compromise, between the riders and the teams, that we're going to do one lap less," White said before the stage start.

"He (Hansen) has had complaints from certain riders about the heat.

But White made it clear he was unimpressed by the push to shorten the stage.

"Yes, it's been hot the last couple of days, but at the end of the day, if you don't like heat don't come to Adelaide," White said.

"We race in the same conditions in Europe in summer.

"Okay, yep, the UV is a bit stronger here, yep, it's the first race of the season so people aren't used to it - but adapt," he said.

Hansen prefers the heat, but said his job was to represent all the riders.

"Matt made some good points - if it's too hot, don't come to Australia - which I totally understand," he said.

"But a lot of riders were asking if there can be a change and I have to represent them, not myself."