Saxo Bank's Nicki Sorensen looks to complete the trifecta
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Thursday, May 06, 2010

Saxo Bank's Nicki Sorensen looks to complete the trifecta

by Jered Gruber at 3:29 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
 

Tour de France and Vuelta stage winner, Saxo Bank's Nicki Sorensen, will take the start on Saturday in Amsterdam for the Giro d'Italia with unique ambitions. The Danish all arounder will turn 35 during this month's Giro, but shows no signs of slowing down. If anything, Sorensen has improved with age, and though an almost typical slow start to the season may indicate otherwise, he's headed into the Giro with the hopes of preparing for his number one season goal, the Tour, as well as seeking a stage win to complete the Grand Tour trifecta to make him the second Dane, alongside Jesper Skibby, to accomplish the feat.

"This year, my main goal is to race the Tour de France and especially to help Andy Schleck in his ambitions for the general classification.

With that goal in mind, the short period of time betwee the Giro and the Tour, and the knowledge that the final week of the Giro will be one of the most difficult weeks of racing in recent memory, his chances of reaching the finish in Milan are slim.

"In this respect, the timing of the Giro is not great, so it is not certain that I will race the Giro to the end, as the final week is very difficult. From the end of the Giro to the start of the Tour, it is only a month. There is no time to pause and rebuild the form again, and it may also not be feasible to stay fit throughout the month and then also be on top throughout the Tour."

Sorensen will be looking for more than just good training at the Giro though. He hopes to take a stage win during his ride through Italy to round out a special feat: a stage win in each Grand Tour.

"It would certainly be fun. Two years ago, I was actually in a great move, and I thought that I would get the victory, but I ended up being caught by the others in the break. I will try to win again this year. It will not be in the first week, because the route profiles do not fit me very well. In the second week, it seems a bit more interesting."

Sorensen sees a number of options for the team heading into the first week and beyond. No one rider looks set to take the reins as a general classification threat, but the team's youth should be able to guarantee an effect on the race's outcome.

"We do not really have a team for the general classification this year. Gustav has just had a little break and is, like me, aiming to be strong for the Tour. Additionally, Chris Anker has been unlucky, but I think he can manage to race into shape during the three week. I'm nevertheless looking forward to a really nice tour with the team."

One rider could change the whole team's plans quickly if he can manage to replicate his performance from the Tour de Romandie last week: Richie Porte. Porte put in a sizzling time trial at the Tour de Romandie to take the win over a highly regarded field and will take the start of the Prologue in Amsterdam as a hot favorite.

"With Richie Porte in super form, it might be really exciting for the team starting on Saturday already! If he takes the jersey, then we will be at the front of the race, working hard to defend the jersey - so the Giro can change very quickly for the team."

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