After disappointing Tour, Evans to hold talks with BMC Racing Team about future direction
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Sunday, July 21, 2013

After disappointing Tour, Evans to hold talks with BMC Racing Team about future direction

by VeloNation Press at 9:28 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
Australian says he needs to see if squad still has confidence in him for future Tours

Cadel EvansStill having a year and a half left on his current contract, Cadel Evans has accepted that his standing and goals within the BMC Racing Team will be assessed after the conclusion of the Tour de France.

The 2011 winner finished seventh overall last year and said that he intended to getting back to his top form this season. However things didn’t go at all to plan; he lost time on the first mountain stage and while he rallied to take ninth one day later on stage nine, since then he has steadily lost time.

He is now 39th overall, one and a half hours behind Chris Froome.

“I have to speak to the team and so on ... [about] what they want to work on,” Evans told the Sydney Morning Herald, appearing to accept that things may change as regards his future standing as the leader of the team for the race.

“The Tour de France is not something you can do on your own. We will see what they want to do and see if they are confident in me and so on.”

In last year’s Tour Evans finished two places behind the American rider Tejay van Garderen, who was fifth. That plus van Garderen’s victory in the Tour of California prompted suggestions that he should be given at least equal status in the Tour, if not outright leadership, but Evans insisted otherwise.

While he had a patchy early season, he said that would ride the Giro d’Italia to build form and would be one hundred percent for the Tour.

He did bounce back in the Giro, netting a fine third overall, but appeared to be running on empty as the Tour de France progressed.

His likely 39th place finish is his lowest ever placing in the race. Van Garderen also struggled, and sits 44th overall, over seven minutes slower than Evans.

That complicates the discussion about team leadership; had van Garderen been strong, he would have become leader on the road.

Evans is now 36 years of age and the end of his career appears to be drawing closer. However, despite the disappointment of the Tour, he seems to rule out stopping in the near future. It is thought that he has one more year left in his current contract with the BMC Racing Team and he intends to fulfil it

“I'm going to go on. I need a lot of people behind me to support me and that. That's going to be part of it, but right now is probably not a good time [to discuss future Tour goals].”

Evans has acknowledged that riding the Giro d’Italia may have been part of the fatigue he has suffered, but he said that there is no point in mulling over what’s in the past.

“I lost a lot of pace in racing and competition last year and that was the reason we took on the Giro,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald. “We also knew it could be good, but it could also be a bad choice. They are the choices you make in sport.

“Maybe, if I didn't go to the Giro I would not have got a good result here because I missed that base of competition and I would have got nothing?”

“But that is sport, and if nothing else I am doing good - if not for the end of this season - for next season.”

His post-Tour racing programme is yet to be finalised but having ridden the Giro and the Tour, it is almost certain he won’t look at the Vuelta a España. The USA Pro Cycling Challenge is one option.

As for the world championships, it remains to be seen if he will compete in the Italian event in September. He bounced back from a difficult Tour in 2009 when he won the world championships. With this year’s race taking place on a similarly tough circuit, it seems conceivable that he may wish to take part again.

That will become more clear in time; right now, he’s focussing on finishing his ninth Tour, then returning home to his family.


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