Sunday, June 09, 2013

Sánchez - Everything's possible

Having completed 38 days of racing at the end of the Critérium du Dauphiné on Sunday, Samuel Sánchez will now take a well-earned rest from competition.

His win atop Superdévoluy on Saturday was the team's first WorldTour win since Ion Izagirre nailed that stage in the 2012 Giro d'Italia, and it was also Euskaltel's first triumph in the French stage-race, once a happy hunting ground for the team, since Ibán Mayo bested Alejandro Valverde and Oscar Sevilla at Toussuire in 2006.

In other words he's putting his bike aside for a while on a high. Speaking to French sports publication l'Équipe after yesterday's stage, 'Samu' revealed he'll now be taking a vacation with his family to recharge the metaphorical batteries for later-season goals.

Exactly what those goals will be, though, is up in the air. It's been assumed that he'll double up on Grand Tours this year by doing the Vuelta a España later this season, but, according to himself, that's just one of many options.

"During my career I've only ever done two GTs once: in 2005 I did both the Giro and the Vuelta", he explained. "This year I might do the same, but there are other possibilities as well: the Tour de Pologne, the ENECO Tour, the Canadian races, China... Everything's possible".

What appears clear, though, is that he'll be aiming to peak for this year's World championships in Firenze, Italy.

On paper, the course should suit a rider with his characteristics - but then again it suits pretty much every top Spaniard in the peloton.

"We got to see the course during a stage of the Giro. It's an interesting one for me, but that also goes for the whole national team with the likes of Rodríguez, Contador, Valverde..."

While it remains to be seen what role Sánchez will be handed in Firenze, assuming he gets one that is, the 2008 Olympic champion will no doubt be gunning to add a title he's previously admitted is "missing" from his palmarès.

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