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"The world championships are the pinnacle, a race I’d like to win, you get to wear the rainbow jersey for 12 months. Those factors have an extra element none of the other classics have.”

Photo: Sirotti

SIMON GERRANS

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27.09.2015 @ 14:22 Posted by Joseph Doherty

After an amazing 2014 which saw him win his national road race, podium the Worlds and Amstel Gold, as well as win the Tour Down Under and Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Aussie Simon Gerrans has had a year to forget in 2015.

 

After a crash in the offseason delayed his season start and then crashing out again on his return to Strade Bianche, he took the Maglia Rosa in the Giro before crashing in that race too, virtually ruining his season. In fact, Gerrans has crashed seven times this year. But the fast finisher is fit once more and eyeing the Worlds Road Race, where he is Michael Matthews plan B.

 

“It is no secret that is has been a pretty turbulent season for me. It seems like it has been a season full of setbacks. But there have been a few lessons and one of those has been about resilience. I have worked just as hard in this season as I have in any other. I don’t have any personal results to show for it, and every time I seem to get close to top form I have had another set back. It’s obviously been a tough year but from the positive side of things I have been involved in some fantastic team results. That kept the motivation going and me inspired to continue working hard.,” he told Cyclingnews.

 

“As far as preparations and seasons go, you couldn’t have had two more contrasting ones. Last year, everything seemed to go right; whereas this year… It’s also a different course this year too. Last year there was a lot more climbing, it was a physically more demanding circuit. But the sensations are really good and preparation in the last period has gone really good. I feel like I am nearly on track,” he said, comparing his form going into the Worlds in 2014 to this time round.

 

With so little racing in his legs, he says he has to race smarter than last year, where he was strong enough to follow moves throughout the race.

 

“There could be a significant number of guys at the finish. Tactically you are going to have to be very astute to be there and judge your efforts. If you are not the quickest guy there, it will be a race that comes down to tactics.”

 

Despite all the bad luck, he says he is really excited to pull on a jersey for Australia for the last time that the Worlds really suits him, with the 2016 course expected to be a bunch finish like in 2011.

 

“It’s not hard to get excited. It’s not often that we get to race for Australia, wear the green and gold and get to race alongside a group of Aussies. The world championships are the pinnacle, a race I’d like to win, you get to wear the rainbow jersey for 12 months. Those factors have an extra element none of the other classics have.”

 

“I’m not going to say it is my last chance, but it is pretty much my last shot at the rainbow jersey. As far as urgency, I wouldn’t really call it urgency to win, but it would a phenomenal achievement. When you look back and think some of the best bike riders in the world have never won a rainbow jersey, and some have won several."

 

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