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"I would be satisfied with a stage win and a place in the top five. But mostly I want to perform at a high level and be in contention with the real leaders, Valverde, Rodriguez, Nibali, Samuel Sanchez."

Photo: Sirotti






09.08.2013 @ 11:14 Posted by Jesper Ralbjerg

Sky duo and close friends Sergio Henao and Rigoberto Uran will once more form a perilous amalgamation for in the Vuelta a España with the first-mentioned feeling poised after his fifth overall in the Tour of Poland recently.


Back in May, the pair did just that as their designated team leader Bradley Wiggins' campaign disintegrated at the Giro d'Italia, propelling Uran to the podium.


In an interview with Henao acknowledged that the Giro, where he finished 16th on GC, left him feeling quite drained and so the Colombian didn’t make his return to racing until the Tour of Poland.


Looking ahead to the Spanish grand tour, Henao is eager to enter the race as fresh as possible, electing to forego the ongoing Vuelta a Burgos, where he was second overall last season behind Katusha’s Daniel Moreno.


"While in Poland we decided to forego Burgos because I want to get motivated and fresh for the Vuelta," he explained. "I will train in Pamplona and then we will shift to Andorra. The idea is, incidentally, get familiar with some finishes like Angliru which I do not know."


Henao’s results during the 2013 so far include a stage win at Volta ao Algarve and Pais Vasco (where he also finished third overall) and finishing as runner-up to Moreno again at Flèche Wallonne.


If possible, Henao will be looking to perk up on his 14th placing at last year’s Vuelta when a third place on stage 17 represented the high point of his Vuelta campaign.


"I would be satisfied with a stage win and a place in the top five. But mostly I want to perform at a high level and be in contention with the real leaders, Valverde, Rodriguez, Nibali, Samuel Sanchez ... They are the favourites and I would be very happy if I can be with them. Colombia has demonstrated its level; Rigo [Rigoberto Uran] was second in the Giro and at the Tour Quintana [finished as runner-up], why not also be on the podium in the Vuelta?"


Following the Vuelta, Henao said, he would turn a keen eye to the UCI world road championships the hilly parcours of which is bound to benefit the Colombian team which will field a team of nine riders many of whom possess exquisite climbing skills.


"For us it is very important to compete on the same terms as Spain or Italy," Henao explained. "It is historic. The worlds course is very suitable for Colombians, and the type of rider we are. We have a strong and united team and believe that it is a good opportunity. If we work together, we can fight for the championship."



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