The Week That Was...
With the 2005 season beginning, this week's column is coming from the Jacobs Creek Tour Down Under, the first major event of the year. Now in its seventh year, the race continues to grow and has attracted star riders such as Stuart O?Grady, Robbie McEwen, Gilberto Simoni, Cadel Evans and Isidro Nozal in 2005.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday, a handful of the top riders gave thoughts and opinions on the coming week in and around the South Australian city of
Following a dramatic 2004 season, former race winner, Stuart O?Grady returns with his French Cofidis team. "If I said I wasn't here to win I'd just be lying...and I'd probably get shot. So I'm pretty motivated, even if my form isn't 100 percent. I like the challenge and the team has come down with a very supporting role. I've got a teammate, Matt White, who's absolutely flying. So it's not really very mathematical to work out that he and I are going to be the leaders."
O?Grady went on to add that at this stage, he was only at about 80% of his fitness but had ?trained a little bit harder than last year in December and January to try and get good preparation for the National Championships and the Tour Down Under. So I've probably gone a little bit harder than I did last year, but last year was a long season, I had a little bit bigger break than I had before but I just felt I needed it and the form's not too bad."
Discussing the race?s ever improving stature, the
Having left the German T-Mobile squad, former Mountain Bike champion, Cadel Evans, returns to
Evans also commented that, "From a results point of view, I'm a bit further ahead of where I need to be for sure, but when you're riding good you never say it's too good ? you take good form when it comes. I was happy that on a course like that, which wouldn't normally be a course for me, I was there at the end."
Keep up to date with the Tour Down Under race results on Roadcycling.com.
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Until next week,