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White: ‘It will hard to eclipse Tour performance in future’

Mitchelton-Scott enjoyed a banner season in 2019, with four stage wins in the Tour de France that sport directors admit will be hard to match.

Mitchelton-Scott enjoyed a banner Tour de France with four stage wins, so much so that team brass admit it might be hard to match in the coming years.

Simon Yates won two stages, and Daryl Impey and Matteo Trentin each won one apiece. That’s more than the team had won in all of its previous Tours combined. Topping that won’t be an easy task, but it’s a good problem to have, said lead sport director Matt White.

“It’s going to be hard to eclipse our performance at this year’s Tour de France in the future,” White said Thursday in a team release. “Four [stage wins] is a big chunk of the race for any one team. Whenever you take that many wins at a grand tour it’s very special, especially on the biggest stage in the sport. It’s a Tour de France that won’t be forgotten too easily, that’s for sure.”

The Australian-registered team was consistent across 2019. Though it didn’t win a grand tour to match Simon Yates’ breakout win in the 2018 Vuelta a España, the team made up for with consistency throughout the WorldTour calendar.

“We performed at a very high level in all the WT events and across the season we have been super competitive at every race we have lined up in,” White said. “We’ve shown consistency and that comes with having depth in the team. As a team we don’t lean on one person for a lot of results. Daryl, Matteo and the Yates brothers have a number of wins between them, but the wins are really spread amongst the group, which is great because people see that there’s opportunities out there for everybody.”

The team won 35 times with 11 different riders, reflecting its growing depth.

“But for me, the important thing to note is that we never go very long without winning,” White said. “That’s from January to October, and not many teams can guarantee such stability. We have 35 wins this year, and in all of our seasons we haven’t diverted too far from those numbers and to be able to continue to be consistent in our eighth year, with so many wins, it’s not easy and it’s a big achievement that we will be looking to complete again in 2020.”

For 2020, the team sees only a few moves in its roster. It recently renewed with stalwarts Brent Bookwalter and Jack Bauer, while the Yates brothers remain under contract through 2020, and Esteban Chaves until 2021. Trentin departs for CCC Team in 2020, while new arrivals include Andrey Zeits (Astana), Alexander Konychev (Dimension Data) and Barnabas Peak (SEG Racing).