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"This year my goal is to confirm and it is definitely an important thing to win. Then I would like do well in a prestigious WorldTour race. The main objective is Sanremo because if I'm good I can be a protagonist even against...

Photo: Sirotti






23.12.2014 @ 08:30 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

2014 was the breakthrough year for Sonny Colbrelli. The Italian finally took the step that everyone had been waiting, achieving important results throughout the entire season and winning 5 races. In 2015, Bardiani-CSF will count on him and hope that he will repeat and improve his performance from the past season,


Having just returned from a training camp in Fiuggi Terme, he talked to Spaziociclismo and explained that he is ready to take on the next challenges.


"I'm fine. We did this first training mainly to focus on the group and to do some tests," he said. "We got to see the stage of the Giro d'Italia that will end here, we spent the days with the sponsor in Fiuggi, and we talked a bit. It was a gathering with a focus on the team."


In 2014, Colbrelli attracted a lot of attention and he was even one of the leaders of the Italian team at the Worlds in Ponferrada


"Surely expectations are always high, but things are normal as every year. We are young and we changed almost half of the team but we are all very quiet."


Colbrelli doesn't know his full schedule yet but he has a rough idea about his big goals.


"We are defining all the final details," he said. "I will start in Donoratico at the GP Costa degli Etruschi. Then I will do the Tour of Oman and from there we will see.


"This year my goal is to confirm and it is definitely an important thing to win. Then I would like do well in a prestigious WorldTour race. The main objective is Sanremo because if I'm good I can be a protagonist even against the teams that are there."


In 2015, the finish of the Italian classic will return to Via Roma which is expected to provide more opportuities for the attackers.


"The finish is now closer to Poggio," Colbrelli said. "There may be less sprinters in the final kilometre and I can take advantage of that."


Other big goals for Colbrelli are likely to be Tirreno-Adriatico and Giro d'Italia.


"I looked at the course for Tirreno - Adriatico and it is like that of previous years. There is a stage suited to my skills but it will be all about preparation for Milan - San Remo. There are many stages in the Giro - in particular the one that finishes in Fiuggi - which are really good for my characteristics. The one to Imola is not bad.


"I hope I get to ride with a better condition than in recent years. I've always been there but I was not like I wanted and I lost my form in the final week. This year I started the Giro well but I had problems in the last week. I finished strongly and then I won in Slovenia and the Apennines.  


"If you know what you did wrong, you know how to imporve and there is something to build on."


Bardiani is known for its commitment to young riders and next year the team will have no less than six neo-pros.


"I already talked to the new riders but I already knew them as they are only two or three years younger than me," he said. "I told them to be quiet because the first year is all about experience and it is important to deal with things in a quiet manner. If you train well, it is easier to stay quiet because you know that you have doen the maximum. Then the results will come."


In 2014, Colbrelli got famous for his many top 5 results but for a long time he was unable to take that elusive first victory. He finally opened his account in the Tour de Slovenie in June.


"For me it was really an extraordinary thing," he said. "After so many places of honour, I could win. I gained confidence and I paid back my teammates because they had helped me try to win for three or four months. However, the sports directors told me not to stop believing in my chances and finally the results arrived. With the first victory I opened a door and tried to make the most of all the races."


Colbrelli ended his season on a high as he was part of the Italian team for the Worlds.


"That was a great experience," he said. "My first Worlds with the professionals. I was almost the captain and I enjoyed it. To see Nibali be at your disposal like Bennati, Visconti and Aru was very nice and it was a great joy. I will never forget it."


Colbrelli's consistency meant that he got close to the overall win in the UCI Europe Tour but he finally had to admit defeat to Tom Van Asbroeck.


"If I had really focused on that rankin, the outcome would have been different," he said. "I raced normally, but I never looked at this ranking. Maybe he (Van Asbroeck, ed,) aimed at it. But when I saw that I was in the lead before the last race, I told myself to try but I did not succeed. The advantage [for Van Asbroeck] is that in Belgium there are so many races in which you can earn many points. But being up there is a little satisfaction, and it means that I have been good."



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