Gilbert extends with BMC Racing Team, wants a second world title plus Classics success
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Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Gilbert extends with BMC Racing Team, wants a second world title plus Classics success

by VeloNation Press at 5:57 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
“I can for sure do better than the last two years”

Philippe GilbertConfirming that his big season goal is to successfully defend his world road race title, Philippe Gilbert and the BMC Racing Team have also announced today that he will remain part of the team for the next three seasons.

He has been given an extension, even though the number of victories anticipated by the BMC Racing Team when signing him has been less than it expected. After netting eighteen wins while with Silence Lotto in 2011, he clocked up just three last year – two stages in the Vuelta a España plus the world title - and none this year.

“We are pleased to announce that Philippe has extended his contract through the 2016 season,” said the team’s CEO and President Jim Ochowicz. “After the Tour de France, he will focus on the one day ProTour races and his defense of his world championship title. Our future years together offer many opportunities to capture victories in his favorite races.”

Gilbert said that he believed he can step up a level in the future, returning to his top form. “I’m happy I made this choice a few weeks ago. For me it is a big challenge to stay in the team with nice goals to reach.

“The most important are the Classics, and we have a really strong team for this. So I will focus in the future on these points. I think the one-day races are my specialty. I’m now in the Tour but it is not my speciality. In the one day races I know I can do well, I can for sure do better than the last two years. My ambition is to win some with Team BMC.”

While he is yet to clock up success while in the rainbow jersey, he hopes to do that between now and the defence of his title in September. Gilbert has said that the team’s GC goals in the Tour de France mean that he doesn’t have a green light to chase personal ambitions, but even if that doesn’t happen during the Tour, he will have time afterwards to try to raise his arms in triumph.

Stages in the Vuelta a España are an opportunity, and so too other races. However taking a second world title would top everything else.

“For sure it's a big goal,” he said, speaking about the chance to be the first double champion since Paolo Bettini in 2006 and 2007. “I'm already starting to think about this. It is important to me. I am very focussed on this. My ambition is to finish this Tour with good condition and then go to the Vuelta and come better again.”

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