Sagan (BORA-hansgrohe) claimed his first Down Under stage win in Uraidla last year and marked a consequent stint in the leader’s jersey but hasn’t advertised a potential repeat effort.
“I’m here just to train. If I get something, some stage, it’s good and if not then I’m not worried about anything,” the three-time world champion said.
The 146.2km third stage from Lobethal to the Uraidla is being touted as potentially one of the most difficult in recent race history, with the peloton set to complete seven laps of the finishing circuit.
“It’s going to be harder than these last two days, but we will see during the stage,” Sagan said.
The 28-year-old finished stage two yesterday third behind surprise winner and new race leader Patrick Bevin (CCC), with Australia’s Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) second.
The trio were ahead of a crash that held-up most of the peloton and inconvenienced overnight race leader Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick-Step), who settled for seventh place on the stinging uphill drag to Angaston.
“I think the more dangerous sprint was yesterday, today was more about legs,” said Sagan.
“The crash didn’t affect me. I think somebody touched my back wheel, but I don’t know who it was.”
The sprinters weren’t guaranteed a shot at line honours on a finish that has previously tailored to puncheurs. Sagan didn’t respond to an attack from Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana), who Bevin said he used as a “springboard” to the line.
“I just stayed behind Bevin. He won I think very easy, he had good legs,” Sagan said.