Evans enthusiastic about BMC team as new season nears
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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Evans enthusiastic about BMC team as new season nears

by Conal Andrews at 6:50 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling

Cadel Evans has expressed satisfaction with his new BMC Racing Team, saying that the philosophies and targets there sync perfectly with his own beliefs and motivations. He will get his season underway in just over a month’s time in the Tour Down Under, and feels secure that he is in the right setup.

“The structure and the organisation at BMC is amongst [that of] the best ProTour teams, if not the best,” he told Ozcycling.com in a video interview with ex-pro Scott McGrory. “Behind the scenes, that is what really matters. Plus the fact that they have got a lot of really good, experienced riders. They don’t have a specialist climber who can be there in the top ten…but there are only one or two teams who do have a climber who can be there in the top ten for their GC guys as all the climbers are already GC riders themselves.

“It is a really good organisation, really good people and for me it is a really neat fit – the goals of the team, the philosophies of the team, my goals and my philosophies, cycling and my job…I’m really looking forward to it.”

The Australian has been with the Silence Lotto setup for several seasons but tensions arose during last year’s Tour. He was below par due to illness and the team publicly stated that he would no longer command sole leadership of the team in future editions. Evans has often been left isolated in the mountains and felt there was a clear lack of understanding from the team during a difficult time for him; that fractured the relationship and he began negotiating with BMC for what would be a wholly unexpected move.

The team is a Professional Continental squad rather than ProTour level, but buying up riders such as Evans, Alessandro Ballan and George Hincapie mark a big increase in its level. It expects to ride all the major races including the Tour, and has also earned an invite to the Tour Down Under.

He will start there and finish up eight months later with another race in Australia, namely the world road race championships in his home region of Geelong. That’s longer than he would usually race, but he said that he will gauge his form to make sure he is strong when he needs to be.

“It is long,” he admits. “Of course I will ride the worlds but it is not like I will gear my season around it like I did this year. I’m not going to say I can’t win it but it is really not for me.

“It is not my course, that is for sure. I think I will be here riding for probably Alby Davis or Stuart O’Grady and that is fine. I will do my job in that regard. It is a long season too, from the first race to the last is long.

“My emphasis next year is going to be on the early part of the year, hence the reason why I can squeeze in the Tour Down Under. I think next Friday we will announce it all [his schedule].”

Evans has spent much of his time this month signing his biography, which was co-written by Australian journalist Rob Arnold. Big crowds have turned up and the book has sold out of several stores. He said there’s been a lot of work in the project, but it is worth it.

“The idea of writing the book was to help people have a better understanding of cycling so they can appreciate it more. Part of writing a book is promoting it. I didn’t know it was three weeks – it has been my third Grand Tour of the year, but that is part of it. Rob Arnold and myself have spent two years putting it together, so we will finish it off properly and it is all done.

“Winning the worlds came at a very good time. It was due to go to print three days afterwards, but of course I’d like to add another few chapters in. It has been really well accepted. People seem to have really enjoyed it.”

He’s also taken satisfaction from the process, in that it has helped him to be more reflective. “When you put it together, you look back on your life…it is nice to look back at where you have been rather than being so concentrated on where you are going.”

Evans is a highly ambitious person, though, and so that view will change. Once the 2010 season starts he’ll be totally focussed on the Tour de France. He’s now 32 years of age and so he knows that he has to strike now if he is, after two runner-up slots and two other top-ten placings, to finally win the biggest race in cycling.


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