Mitchelton-Scott team director Matt White enjoys working with twins Adam and Simon Yates, who will lead their Tour de France line-up.
Cycling Central

6 Jul 2019 - 10:22 AM 

Tour de France team directors can face all sorts of challenges with their riders. Competing ambitions, personality clashes, spats, outright hatred - Mitchelton-Scott boss Matt White has twins.

The Australian cycling team will have British rider Adam Yates as their general classification hope when the Tour starts on Saturday night in Brussels.

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His No.1 support rider will be twin brother Simon. That's led to speculation that sibling rivalry might derail the Mitchelton-Scott campaign. White scoffs at the notion.

"There's absolutely no rivalry ... people like to build up the sibling rivalry, but that couldn't be further from the truth," he told AAP. "You can see more of a rivalry with brothers ... but they're twins and twins are different."

The Yates brothers rarely race together, but Simon is returning the favour from his brother last September.

After a disappointing Tour de France, Adam rode in support of Simon at the Vuelta a España.

Simon won - the first Grand Tour title for Mitchelton-Scott.

As White noted, Adam probably would not have eschewed the Vuelta had he not been asked - but his support late in the race was critical.

"He saved our arse on that last mountain stage," White said of Adam.

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Simon is supporting Adam after finishing in the top 10 two months ago at the Giro d'Italia. That's not to say the twins are always best mates.

"They get along pretty well, but they don't mind a bit of yip-yap between each other," White said. "Adam is the more aggressive of the two.

"They're northern Englishmen, they don't pull a punch. Well, not literally."

White also noted that they are different personalities.

"Simon is a little more reserved with how he says things whereas Adam is not," he said with a laugh.

White noted that when the team assembled in Brussels this week, it was the first time the Yates brothers had seen each other in about two months.

But they are in regular contact, work with the same coach and will room together during the Tour.

"I like working with the two of them - they're very different but very similar," White said. "They definitely watch what each other is doing when they're not at the same race.

"They're always talking with others, sharing ideas about stuff. Whenever one has a rough trot, I think certainly the other benefits from it."

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