McCann wants to build slowly, Langkawi chances unclear
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Monday, March 01, 2010

McCann wants to build slowly, Langkawi chances unclear

by VeloNation Press at 1:55 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 

Multiple Irish road race and time trial champion David McCann is taking part in the Tour de Langkawi and is the second-oldest rider in the race. A solid climber and time trialist, he’d normally be a reliable bet for a good showing in Asian events, having competed strongly for several years with the Giant Asia team and finished second on a TT stage in the 2006 race. However he has said that he is planning a slower-than-usual start to the season.

“The plan here is just to build up, really,” he told VeloNation over the weekend. “It is only really the first race. The Tour of Taiwan is in two weeks time and that is more important to us, really. I don’t feel like I am in as good shape as before, what with the winter at home. But we will see what happens on the road. I am not really that concerned about it, for a change. I normally chase every race but I am more focussed on the end of the year and building up slowly for it.”

McCann finished 26th on the first leg of the race, rolling in as part of the first half of the main bunch. He indicated afterwards that he didn’t find the stage too taxing. With bunch sprints the most likely outcome on most of the days ahead, he knows that his overall performance will most likely hinge on Saturday’s leg up the Genting Highlands.

Whatever happens there, he sounds like he won’t be too concerned. “The targets are the worlds, really, above everything,” he said, clearly motivated after finishing eleventh in the TT last year. “I will have a good crack at those again. Also, the Commonwealth Games are going to be late in the season as well, so it is all a late focus. The schedule is slow at getting going but I am happy enough with that.”

Race programme and team choice:

McCann was expected to ride with the Jelly Belly team this season but a last-minute approach from Giant Asia made him return to the squad he competed with from 2004-2006, and again in 2008.

He’s clearly comfortable with the Taiwan-based team. “I was going to go to Jelly Belly but then Giant came through. They were all Taiwanese riders last year but then decided they were going to change back [to international riders]. It will be good, we have got a lot of new guys again.

“The setup is similar to when I was with them before, the same sort of thing. It is something I am familiar with and that was half the reason for the decision. I tried America before with a new team, new setup and it didn’t really work out. It is the people [in Giant Asia] more than anything else – I get on well with these guys.”

They have worked out a decent schedule between them, allowing him to do some big events while also having some time back home in Belfast.

“The programme will be similar to before – I will be over and back. I will be away just over a month this time, then that should get me home a couple of weeks. After that, I will build up towards Qinghai in July, then take another month off.”

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