Hamish Schreurs was the unsung hero of New Zealand at the Tour of Austria. Much was made about Aaron Gate’s successful king of the mountains crusade; but what flew under the radar was Schreurs supporting role for overall race winner and teammate Ben Hermans. Now he’s in Utah looking for more of the same thanks!
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While teammate Hermans took the plaudits for a successful general classification campaign, Hamish Schreurs and his fellow Israel Cycling Academy squad enjoyed what by all accounts was a phenomenal eight days in Austria. “Austria was really good for the team and also really good for myself; I was riding really well. I supported Ben, all the days we went all in for him, we knew he was going well.”
The defensive work that went into protecting the lead of Hermans was impressive, keeping the slender 18 second deficit that the Belgian took on day 3 all the way to the finish. For Hamish’s part he played a role very similar to that of Patrick Bevin in the opening week of the Tour de France. “After day 3 we had the yellow jersey so it was my job to ride the front from day 4-8.”
Now it’s goodbye Europe and hello America, and a race that Schreurs threw himself into preparation for not long after the Austria curtain came down. “After [Austria] I went straight to training for America which was good but it took me more than a few days to recover from Austria,” Hamish told us. “I had 4 days in Girona then came to America.”
The prologue time trial that opened this year’s Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah was surprisingly more general classification oriented than it may have looked at first. Schreurs finished 93rd in the 5.31km out-and-back race against the clock; 37 seconds behind stage winner Tejay van Garderen. “Today’s prologue was simple but hard I would say for a prologue it was more for the GC guys with a hill that you could make up a lot of time and in the results it more or less shows most of the GC guys in the top 20.”
Looking ahead Schreurs will again be looking at supporting the Tour of Austria champion; who currently sits in 27th place overall at 17 seconds. Also in the running will be Spaniard Ruben Plaza, who starts the first road stage 23rd at 17 seconds also. However, don’t discount seeing Schreurs off the front of the field in the early stages. “For the week here I will look for some personal results in the first few road days then be all in for Hermans and Plaza the last two days,” Hamish said.
“But it is my first time racing at altitude so I’m not sure how I will be going. I feel like I am going ok but when you get to 2500m it’s different let alone 3000m which we do a few times. It is also super dry and hot around 40 degrees but with it being so dry it makes it hard but hey, same for all, will be a good week.”
After the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah Hamish will be getting in the generous spirit and giving away a pair of awesome Berk Composite Shoes. To find out how to get your hands on them click here.