Simon Gerrans “super motivated” ahead of Amstel Gold Race
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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Simon Gerrans “super motivated” ahead of Amstel Gold Race

by Ben Atkins at 6:08 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Spring Classics, Amstel Gold Race
 
Orica-GreenEdge’s Pais Vasco team to take on Dutch classic

simon gerransSimon Gerrans has declared himself “super motivated” ahead of Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race as he leads the Orica-GreenEdge team into the Dutch Classic. The former Australian champion finished third in the 2011 edition, behind the seemingly unstoppable Philippe Gilbert, and his professed goal is to go even better this year.

“The final part of Amstel Gold has been changed this year,” Gerrans explained. “Instead of finishing on the Cauberg, the race now finishes 1200 metres beyond the top of the climb. The road race at the Road World Championships last year featured this finish, but Amstel Gold features much more climbing than last year’s Worlds course. It’s hard to predict how the finish can and will change the way the race unfolds.

“Typically, this is a race of attrition,” he continued. “It gets harder and harder and faster and faster as the day goes on, and with each new difficulty, the front group becomes more and more select. The strongest guys on the day are left to contest the win.”

So far this season Gerrans has taken stage victories in the Santos Tour Down Under, the Volta a Catalunya, and the Vuelta al Pais Vasco, taking the leader’s jersey for a day in the latter. With all eight of Orica-GreenEdge’s riders for this Sunday having recently ridden together, Gerrans hopes that the team will work together well on the Limburg hills.

“Our team for Amstel raced together at Pais Vasco,” he explained. “We took two stage wins [through Gerrans and Daryl Impey on consecutive days - ed] and helped Pieter Weening earn sixth overall. These were good results made possible with some really good teamwork, and it shows that the whole team is racing at a high level. Last year, several of the riders we brought for the Ardennes were racing them for the first time.

“This year, everybody has that much more experience under their belt,” he added. “Simply knowing what to expect will allow us to race at a better level.”

Last season saw Gerrans take the biggest victory of his career at Milano-Sanremo, and he’s ready to take his second Spring Classic at Amstel Gold on Sunday.

“I’m super motivated for this race,” he said. “I’ve done well at Amstel Gold in the past, and I know I can do well here again. My goal is to go out there and win, and we have the team to do that this year.”

ORICA-GreenEdge team for the Amstel Gold Race
Christian Meier, Daryl Impey, Michael Albasini, Michael Matthews, Pieter Weening, Simon Clarke, Simon Gerrans, Wesley Sulzberger

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