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"I think I've been able to show myself well and I will continue to work in this way during the next few races. The goal is to support the best riders and help them to win as much as possible."

Photo: Etixx-QuickStep






08.03.2016 @ 23:26 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

In his debut season as a Team Sky rider Michal Golas has been quick to show everyone just what he is capable of.


The Pole joined the team alongside compatriot Michal Kwiatkowski over the winter and wasted little time in making his way to the front of the peloton, most significantly as part of a winning line-up at the Volta ao Algarve.


Fresh off an assured performance at Strade Bianche, the 31 year old now heads to Tirreno-Adriatico as part of a strong team aiming for top honours in Italy.


A stellar start list means the fight for the blue jersey should be intense, but with Kwiatkowski and Wout Poels both picking up some early-season results there is plenty of cause for optimism.


Heading into the seven-day spectacle Golas feels good, telling "I think my condition is in the right place after a pretty good start to the season. I've found my rhythm and found my place in the team and I think Strade Bianche confirmed that I'm on the right track. Even though I crashed part-way through the race I was still able to do a job for the boys in the final. I'm pretty happy about my form and looking forward to Tirreno.


"It should be a good race for us - we have a strong line-up and we hope to go out there and try to win!"



Now in his 10th year as a pro, it may come as a surprise to many that Tirreno is one of only a handful of major events that the former Polish champion is yet to compete in.


"It's one of the few races that I've never done in my career," he admits. "When I look at the cycling calendar I struggle to find many races I've never done before, but Tirreno is certainly one. It will be a new experience, but on the other hand I lived in Versilia where we start for a couple of years. So I know the roads here and also in Tuscany. I've done the Giro several times so it's nothing new in that sense - even if Tirreno itself is a new race for me."


The 'Race of the Two Seas' is an intriguing one which pulls together a mix of Classics stars alongside bona-fide Grand Tour contenders.

On its place in the calendar, and what it takes to win, Golas reasoned: "There's a thinking that Tirreno is a build-up race for the Classics, and that teams want to bring riders to find their shape before those races. But the field is very strong and I think in modern cycling nobody really rides to prepare - everyone is already ready for this race. It's going to be a pretty tough one, but for me the parcours looks like it will also make for an open race. We have one big uphill finish, some long stages and time trials. So you need to be a good all-rounder to be successful and also to have a strong team around you. That can help you take some time in the team time trial and to bring you into the final of some of the complicated stages.


"In Italy it is never as easy as it seems. The profiles sometimes can look pretty easy and maybe a day for the sprinters - but when you get there the roads are always tricky. The weather can also play a big factor so it's never a straightforward race. Thankfully this year the weather looks good, which was not the case in the last couple of editions. Now the bad weather has moved to Paris-Nice (laughs)."



After starting out at Challenge Mallorca, Golas has taken in Dubai Tour, supported Geraint Thomas to victory in the Algarve and tackled the opening weekend of the Classics.


Now in Italy he took stock of his first few months in black and blue, adding: "I've found the team to be like I expected - very professional. We think about all the details, but on the other hand we have a nice group of guys and we can have fun as well. The result is very important but the atmosphere in the team is also great. Because of that we can achieve more I think. In the first few races I was searching for my place in the team. But now I think I've shown that I can work for our leaders in every race - and that I can give my best to help the others.


"I think I've been able to show myself well and I will continue to work in this way during the next few races. The goal is to support the best riders and help them to win as much as possible."



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