Critérium du Dauphiné: Van Den Broeck optimistic after mountains work
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Monday, June 4, 2012

Critérium du Dauphiné: Van Den Broeck optimistic after mountains work

by VeloNation Press at 8:11 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Critérium du Dauphiné
Belgian satisfied with prologue performance

Jurgen Van den BroeckAs was the case last year, Jurgen Van Den Broeck has gone into the Critérium du Dauphiné following a block of altitude training; as was also the case, he’s getting back into the racing groove, and expects to see stronger form in the Tour de France rather than in the shorter event.

With that in mind, he gave the thumbs up to his 27th place of yesterday, eleven seconds behind the winner Luke Durbridge (GreenEdge). "I am satisfied," he said, according to "I'm not going to complain about this course, which is very flat, without too many turns. But don’t forget that I have not raced since Liège-Bastogne-Liège and I'm not a specialist of this discipline.”

Eleven years ago Van den Broeck took a world title against the clock, but he has not specialized in the discipline since then. He said that it’s not accurate to make comparisons between what he has achieved in the past.

“I know, I am always reminded of my success at the junior worlds, but it is not comparable,” he said. “At the time, I fought against guys my age, now, as here, this is the cream of the international peloton.”

That said, he was a strong sixth in the time trial in the Volta ao Algarve at the start of the year, this ride helping him to fourth overall. Other highlights this spring are third overall in the Volta a Catalunya and a solid tenth in Flèche Wallonne.

The Tour is the big goal, though, and the year has been structured around trying to be at his best there. He was fourth two years ago and wants to chase a podium place after crashing out last season.

Van den Broeck has worked hard in various mountain training camps and while he’s slightly fatigued from the altitude and also lacks race sharpness, he’s feeling upbeat.

"I rode well because with everything I've done in recent weeks at altitude, with over 60,000 feet of elevation gain, I am missing a little strength,” he said. “The Dauphiné is a preparation for the Tour, but this is not a small race. So I hope to finish as high up the classification as is possible.”

The 29 year old Lotto Belisol rider was fourth in both 2010 and 2011. He also picked up a stage win last year.


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