Team Sky neo-pro Luke Rowe speaks about Mallorca debut and 2012 season
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Saturday, February 04, 2012

Team Sky neo-pro Luke Rowe speaks about Mallorca debut and 2012 season

by Xylon van Eyck at 9:26 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
“The team are putting no pressure on me to win races, it’s just the pressure you put on yourself”

Luke RoweLuke Rowe will make his debut as a professional cyclist this weekend for Team Sky. The Welshman has been signed on a mandatory two-year deal for neo-pro’s after coming through the British cycling development ranks following in the footsteps of Ben Swift and Ian Stannard.

This week VeloNation asked him about his expectations and if he felt obliged to clock up victories this season, much like Alex Dowsett did for the team in his first season last year.

“No I don't feel any pressure to go out there a win races,” he answered. “It takes a very special bike rider to win races as a first year pro. Sure it can be done, people have proved that. We’re all human, we all have two legs and two arms but its a huge ask.

“The team are putting no pressure on me to win races, it’s just the pressure you put on yourself. However, if I was ever given a chance to take a win if the team committed to me, I would grab it with both hands and give it everything.”

Rowe will turn his pedals in Team Sky colours for the first time on Sunday at the Mallorca Challenge. As the 21 year old is thrust into the top end of the sport, he’ll race alongside confirmed contenders Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck.

“The first two days are pretty flat so I will be hoping to get up there during these two days as they suit my style of rider. I'm not sure who our sprinter will be yet, it may be Edvald Boason Hagen, so I will be doing everything I can to get him to the line first. The last two days are tough, hilly days. We have some top climbers in Chris Froome and Lars Petter Nordhaug, so they will be strutting their stuff on the climbs.

“After Challenge Mallorca I have Volta ao Algarve. We have a top team here so I will be the water boy, which I'm looking forward to. I then build up to the biggest races of my season…I may get a ride in some of the Ardennes classics.”

While he acknowledges that his role for most of the season will be riding in support of more experienced riders, Rowe is relishing the opportunity to be part of one of cycling’s biggest teams.

“I'm really looking forward to getting stuck into the racing and doing my job for the lads,” he said. “I get a good kick from helping others succeed.”

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