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"I always want to make progress and this year I've certainly become more consistent, both regarding my shape, my strength and the results."

Photo: TNE/Stiehl

BORA-HANSGROHE

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SAM BENNETT

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NEWS
14.10.2015 @ 07:00 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

The 2015 season ended with disappointment for Sam Bennett but overall the Bora-Argon 18 sprinter draws a positive balance on his second year at the German team. "I always want to make progress and this year I've certainly become more consistent, both regarding my shape, my strength and the results," Bennett told radsport-news.com.

 

The defeat at Paris-Tours did not change the overall assessment despite the fact that the debutant missed the decisive large group and so had to give up on victory very early. Bennett wrote the mistake down to his inexperience. "I did not know the race. I was at the beginning just too relaxed and have been waiting for the mass sprint. But as the gap grew to five minutes, I knew that the race was over for me," said the 24-year-old who can already celebrate his birthday during the holiday season on Friday.

 

For the future, however, Bennett sees a good chance that he can also end the French sprint classic much closer to the front than he did on Sunday when he was 100th. “I think this is a race where I could get a good result in the future. On a day in which everything works, that's possible," said the Bora captain who lined up in Chartres with a recent victory in Paris-Bourges. He named the result in the dress rehearsal for Paris-Tours as his greatest success this year.

 

"My victory in Bourges has proven that I have become more consistent and have developed more throughout the year,” said Bennett, who scored his five victories over the period from February (6th stage the Tour of Qatar) to the beginning of October.

 

In his Tour de France debut, he was, however, unable to compete because he had to fight with a bad cold. Therefore, Bennett was also far from - as originally predicted by team manager Ralph Denk - getting involved in the mass sprints. "That I could not train for three weeks in June is the biggest disappointment of the season," he said. Due to lack of training kilometers Bennett ultimately lacked the strength to fight his way to Paris.

 

Despite his early exit on the 17th stage, he regards his French debut as positive. "It needed the experience of a three-week tour and had to give my body the physical stress of a Tour de France," said Bennett who could learn from a lot of the best sprinters in the world at the biggest cycling race in the world. "For example, I learned how they saved their strength and just survived in various stages and then aimed for those days when they had a chance of winning. It was made more interesting by the fact that this Tour was more mountainous than the ones we had seen in the past few years," he said.

 

But Bennett was not the only one to get experience at the Tour. The same was true for the new sprint train that had been gathered around him and he is very pleased with their support. "The results speak for themselves. And even if you're in the best team in the world, there is still room for improvement. As a team with little to no experience when it comes to a sprint train, we have developed ourselves constantly," Bennett concluded.

 

After his second year at Bora-Argon 18, Bennett will relax in the coming weeks and let the body and mind take a break from cycling. He doesn’t want to waste any thoughts on the new season. "At the moment I only think about the break. When I return to training, there is still time enough to make my goals for the upcoming season.”

 

However, those objectives are likely to again include the Tour de France and Paris-Tours.

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