Saturday, January 21, 2012

"I'm my own biggest rival"

For the third year running, Igor Antón will line up at the Vuelta a España as one of the biggest, if not the biggest, favourite later this season. While the 28-year-old failed to come up with the goods in 2011, he's hoping foregoing the Giro and the Tour might propel him to glory this time around. With a number of the sport's top stage-racers likely to opt out of the Spanish GT, the stage is pretty much set for the native of Galdakao. It's telling he rates himself as his biggest rival.

"I'm more mature than I've been before", he told Marca. "I've grown. I'm not just a climber anymore, as I've improved in the classics and in the time trials. I'm not making the mistakes I used to. I hate to go out public saying I'll do this or that, but I do tend to reach the goals I set myself."

Antón refuses to say he's aiming for the Vuelta's top step of the podium, instead claiming he's just hoping to do as well as he did in 2008 and in 2010.

"It might be an advantage just doing one GT next year. I want to emulate what I did in 2008 and 2010. I know how far I can go, but I'm yet to finish it off. My biggest challenger might turn out to be myself".

After the unveiling of the race's 2012 parcours, team leader Samuel Sánchez was quoted as saying the race was made for perennial candidate Jaoquín Rodríguez. According to the Spanish daily, it was all part of a larger strategy from the team to keep the pressure off their featherweight escalador. Antón for his part thinks Euskaltel is the ideal team to help him achieve his goal.

"We all get along very well here. And the support we get from our fans is unlike what you'll find anywhere else", he concluded.


Stephen said...

I'd really like to go and see some stages this year, obviously a mountain top finish would be best but I suspect that if I(we) do go then the stage into Barcelona on the 26 August is the most likely.

Btw, has anyone else read David Millar's biography? His description of leading the TDF into Barca in 2009 and getting caught on the line makes fantastic reading.

Nick said...

Millar s runin to Barcelona was the most exciting part of the tour (asides from Astarloza's victory of course). I haven't read his autobiography but is it worth it? Im always looking for new cycling books to read

Stephen said...

Its a very good story....there is no excusing what he did but reading his book makes it easier to understand how and why he did it...and apart from the drug stuff he has had an interesting life!

Well worth getting hold of a copy Nick.


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