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"It would be nice to get a stage win and why not be on the podium, but maybe it's the best thing to be one hundred percent at the Games."

Photo: Sirotti

ALEJANDRO VALVERDE

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15.10.2015 @ 08:00 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Alejandro Valverde has described 2015 as his "best" and "most consistent" year and made it clear that  his "big goal" in 2016 is the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

"It was the best year for the consistency and everything I've achieved. This means that at 35 years I'm still at the highest global level, getting onto the podium at the Tour which has always eluded me," Valverde told Europa Press at a ceremony in Spain where he was awarded a gold medal for his achievements.
 

He recently won the WorldTour for the fourth time and said thate the podium at the Tour de France will allow him to ride with "less stress and more confidence." "This year I will achieved the podium in the Tour because I had the support of a great team," he added.

 

"Nairo Quintana is a great team leader. I worked for him and this made me have a good general classification and the tranquility allowed me me to get the podium," said the Murcian, who recalled that it was "complicated" because all the big names were all there which made it "very difficult". "I have prepared one hundred percent to be as far forward as possible and help Nairo and one thing led to the other," he said.

 

Facing the 2016 Rio Olympics, the Spanish rider stressed that although it may not "look" like the Spanish team can cooperate, it requires the "maximum performance". "With a maximum of five riders per team it will be hard work, but Javier (Mínguez, Spanish coach) will try to make the best selection and there will be no problem," he said.

"It would be nice to get a stage win and why not be on the podium, but maybe it's the best thing to be one hundred percent at the Games," he said when questioned about the 2016 Giro d'Italia. In this regard, for Valverde made it clear that the best way to be the "one hundred percent" at the Games is to "do the Tour de France." 

Regarding the rainbow jersey of world champion that continues to elude him, he said it will be "difficult" to get it because the course in Qatar will be "completely flat". "We have already raced there at that time of the year and 260 kilometers in this heat will be very hard," he said. 

Finally, Alejandro Valverde described 2015 as a "perfect year" and made it clear that he remains at the top because this sport is "passion" for him. "It's not hard to train, what I find most difficult is the travelling, but I try my best to stay at the top."

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