Tomasz Marczynski aiming high in year two with Vacansoleil-DCM
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Friday, January 04, 2013

Tomasz Marczynski aiming high in year two with Vacansoleil-DCM

by Kyle Moore at 9:49 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Polish rider hopes to race Tour de France for the first time

Tomasz MarczynskiFueled by his 13th place overall in the 2012 Vuelta a España, Tomasz Marczynski has lofty goals for the new season, which will be his second with Vacansoleil-DCM. The Pole will be aiming for his first career start in the Tour de France.

The former Polish national champion transferred to the Dutch squad after two seasons with local continental team CCC Polsat-Polkowice. After getting off to a rough start in his grand tour debut, finishing outside the time cut on stage 12 of the Giro d’Italia, Marczynski came roaring back in the Vuelta. He made an impression on the early climbs and hung in during the difficult final week, securing his spot in the top 15.

After dropping out of the Giro, Marczynski didn’t race again until the Tour of Poland, situated then in the middle of July, a summer alternative to the Tour, and out of the way of the Olympics. The Vacansoleil-DCM rider had recovered well, as he took the mountains classification title in front of home fans, setting up his impressive Vuelta finish the following month.

With the Polish stage race back in its usual slot for 2013, beginning the week after the Tour de France, Marczynski was asked to name his goals for the season – and he named both races. Although, “to ride the Tour is my big ambition,” Marczynski stated on the team website. “It is a boyhood dream. I will do what the team demands of me. Whether that means riding as a domestique, riding for the general classification, or attacking to win a stage.”

If the Polish rider does merit a July call-up in the Vacansoleil-DCM Tour squad, he will have to beat out a growing list of big names on the Dutch team. The outfit began the Tour in 2012 with no less than six riders with skill-sets similar to Marczynski, in Paris-Nice runner-up Lieuwe Westra, Johnny Hoogerland, Marco Marcato, Wout Poels, Rob Ruijgh, and Rafael Valls. Furthermore, Giro d’Italia podium finisher Thomas De Gendt plans to make his return to the Tour in 2013 as leader of the team.

Nevertheless, the Pole says that he has enjoyed his time in the Dutch squad, and takes confidence from having performed well in such a difficult edition of the Vuelta.

“I am having an excellent time [at Vacansoleil-DCM],” Marczynski continued. “It is an open team, where I can find the motivation to build on my career and grow into a top rider.

“[The Vuelta] was very challenging, and according to Alejandro Valverde, there was not such a big difference from the Tour.”

To begin 2013, Marczynski is slated to start the Tour Down Under, where he will ride next to De Gendt and support sprinters Kenny Van Hummel and Boy Van Poppel. “I want to be in very strong form in March and April, and then I want to take some rest in May,” the Pole stated, perhaps assuming that a return trip to the Giro would not be in the cards.

“Otherwise I would be too tired for the Tour in July. After the Vuelta, I raced a good late season last year [Marczynski was 22nd in Il Lombardia and 8th at the Tour of Beijing – ed.]. Hopefully this means that [I recover well after grand tours] and could still ride the Tour of Poland after the Tour de France. Poland is my country, and the people of Poland support me.

“I always enjoy being back there, and it would be great to ride it with a strong performance in the Tour de France behind me.”

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