Sunday, March 09, 2008

Koldo hails team-mates

Koldo was a visibly happy man after taking Euskaltel's first win of the season earlier today. Speaking to the team's website moments afterwards, he praised the work of his team. "The work of my team-mates has been impeccable. I'm very pleased, and this win has taken an enormous amount of weight off my shoulders. They've been working for me the whole race, so to win this stage for them was very important. Today they got me over the last climb and got me into a perfect position at the front. I still remember Samu shouting, with 300 metres to go, "start sprinting, start sprinting!". They all did an incredible job, and I'm very grateful for that." Interestingly, he also spoke of a change in mentality: "I'm fully aware of the fact that I have to win this year. The triumph in Tirreno helped me, but the Vuelta a España really changed my approach. I realized that I cannot always wait for the others to start sprinting. When the best sprinters take off, there's little you can do. They time their sprints very well, so it's very hard to pass them. Because of that, I just have to go for it when I feel the time is right. This approach has made me more consistent, I've got more confidence, and I've become more experienced." Koldo will now take a short break, before he reassumes racing at the Vuelta Ciclista a Castilla y León at the 24th of March. He will then race the first week of the spring Classics, before he takes on his first big goal of the season; the Giro d'Italia. "Now I'll rest a bit, so that I can go to Castilla y León with desire. It' s a very selective route, so I'm not sure there'll be many chances for the sprinters. But if an opportunity arises, we'll try to be in the fight. I still need to improve my form though. The Giro is the objective for the first half of the season, and I'm not at my best yet". If he gets better than this, then we're in for a real treat...

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