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"The team was in a new situation so was an all-new experience for me. I think I can learn from this and take this experience to the Vuelta and try be there again.”

Photo: ANSA - PERI / DI MEO / ZENNARO

STEVEN KRUIJSWIJK

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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25.06.2016 @ 13:28 Posted by Joseph Doherty

While attending the Bianchi store in Milan, Steven Kruijswijk took time to speak with Cyclingnews about his great giro and what lies ahead for him in the future.

 

"I have never been in a top five of Grand Tour but after last year in the Giro especially I was one of the better riders I think. I knew I could be in the top five if everything was going alright," Kruijswijk told Cyclingnews when asked about his seventh place in 2015. "I felt really good from the start in Holland and I was really focused to not make the same mistake from last year when I lost a lot of time in the first week. I was always in the front and felt good the first time we were going uphill. After the first week I was already standing in the top ten, I could grow into the race but of course I never expected to take the pink jersey and even to extend my lead. After the rest day, I took more time again on my competitors so I never expected to be so good."

 

Kruijswijk will head to the Olympics before trying to get his first Grand Tour win at the Vuelta a Espana. He says the Giro serves as valuable experience for himself and his LottoNL-Jumbo team.

 

"There is more attention…the team was in a new situation so was an all-new experience for me. I think I can learn from this year and can take this experience to the Vuelta in August and try and be there again.”

 

Kruijswijk, 29, knows he has plenty of suitors willing to sign him with his current deal up at the season’s conclusion. He hopes to stay with his current team, but says that may not be possible.

 

"We have to see now, my contract ends this year so we have to talk with the team and what we can see for the future," he said. "Hopefully we can find a solution but other teams are interested of course, since I was close in the Giro. I have to see for myself what’s the best for me as I really want to win a Grand Tour in the future or be a podium contender, so I have to be in the best situation for me to get this result.”

 

Kruijswijk hopes the team can sign a few more climbers to be with him in the higher mountains in 2017.

 

"I think the team also sees that when you are in this position, and I showed that I can be in this position, you have to have a stronger team. Especially when it comes to the harder stages when it goes uphill," he reflected. "It’s a case of budget so we have to be smart. Maybe with two or three more climbers in the team with the experience would be better for me."

 

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