Philippe Gilbert confident in Paris-Tours defense following Col d'Eze test
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Friday, October 8, 2010

Philippe Gilbert confident in Paris-Tours defense following Col d'Eze test

by Jered Gruber at 3:40 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Walloon looking forward to possible third straight victory on the Avenue de Grammont on Sunday

As of Tuesday at 10pm, Philippe Gilbert was back at home in Monaco, France. The World Championship favorite put in a great ride in Australia, but ultimately left with nothing to show for his efforts save a dazzling attack that ultimately led to naught.

After spending the greater part of the last year with the Geelong Worlds race in mind, it's understandable that Gilbert was devastated following the disappointment. Gilbert doesn't seem to be letting it keep him down though, preferring to set his sights on a string of races coming up that suit him perfectly.

"The disappointment after the World Championship was huge, but I'll do everything I can to finish the season with a smashing victory," said the Omega Pharma-Lotto leader in an interview with Sporza.

Normally, it would seem that the race he has won two times in succession, Paris-Tours, would likely be out of reach due to the massive time difference between Australia and Europe (eight hours), but following his arrival in Monaco, in fact the very next day, Gilbert did a test on the famous climb just outside of Monaco, the Col d'Eze, and found the results very much to his liking.

"The long trip and jet lag are still [there], but the feeling was very good in training. I tested on Wednesday up the Col d'Eze, and it went really great! That gives me great confidence for Paris-Tours."

The jet lag should be at least slightly improving when Paris-Tours rolls around on Sunday. By that time, Gilbert will have had almost four and a half days on European soil, but then again, he'll have another travel day to get to Paris following quite the adventure just to get home to Monaco from Australia.

"Melbourne to Doha lasted 14 hours, then it was 7 hours from Doha to Madrid, then Madrid to Lyon, Lyon to Nice, two hours and one hour respectively."

If Gilbert can manage to recover from the rigorous travels of the past week in time for Sunday, we could be in for another show from the man who seems intent on making Paris-Tours his own personal playground.


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