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“Liège is my big goal during the Ardennes classics. I’ve been looking forward to this race, as it matches my qualities as a rider better than Amstel and Flèche."

Photo: Sirotti

BRUNO PIRES

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CHRIS ANKER SØRENSEN

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LIÈGE - BASTOGNE - LIÈGE

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MANUEL BOARO

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MICHAEL VALGREN

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PAWEL POLJANSKI

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RAFAL MAJKA

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ROBERT KISERLOVSKI

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ROMAN KREUZIGER

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24.04.2015 @ 11:21 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Tinkoff-Saxo takes on La Doyenne with a squad centered around team captain Roman Kreuziger, who reaches his target race poised and with a good feeling prior to the 253km monument. 
 
Marked by an undulating route, Liège-Bastogne-Liège differs from its more explosive Ardennes counterparts by presenting the riders with longer climbs and a lengthy race finale, where endurance pays dividends. According to team leader Kreuziger, the sustained effort suits him well.
 
“Liège is my big goal during the Ardennes classics. I’ve been looking forward to this race, as it matches my qualities as a rider better than Amstel and Flèche. I felt pretty well in these races and my ambition is to be there in the finale on Sunday. I have trust in my teammates and I believe that we can be competitive”, says Roman Kreuziger and adds:
 
“It’s different from Amstel and Flèche. It’s less about positioning and an explosive sprint at the end and more about simply having the legs and handling the longer climbs and distance. For sure, after 200 kilometers riders will start to drop off and it will be a fight between those who can cope with the distance”.

Roman Kreuizger will be accompanied into action by Rafal Majka, Chris Anker Sørensen, Michael Valgren, Robert Kiserlovski, Pawel Poljanski, Manuele Boaro and Bruno Pires.
 
According to Tinkoff-Saxo sports director Sean Yates, Liège-Bastogne-Liège is a race of trial by elimination and the 253km route demands superior stamina, if one is to be competitive. He underlines that the squad will ride in support of Roman Kreuziger.
 
“For us it’s all for Roman in what concerns the leadership and then we got a good backup team to support him. Roman has targeted Liège out of the three and it’s the race that he’s psyched for after the training camp in Teide and some good performances in Amstel and Fleche. Overall as a team right now, we are maybe lacking a couple of percent to be equal to the best performing teams. But I believe that a top result for Roman in Liège is feasible”, says Sean Yates.
 
“Liège is a matter of timing your effort right, as you can’t go over your threshold, certainly not in a race like this. Roman is a real pro, the kind of rider that does everything in the right way, he leads by example and he’s always in the right position and allocates his energy wisely, so I know he is capable”.

The sports director notes that Tinkoff-Saxo won’t be favorites come Sunday at the start in Liège, but that the 11th place from Flèche Wallonne could likely be improved.
 
“We face tough competition but we want to do a proper job. Roman is a powerful rider, who produces a lot of watts but he’s also bigger than the light guys that are very capable up a climb like Mur de Huy. So the parcours and the climbs of Liège are obviously much more suited for him as the kind of rider that can keep going forever”, explains Sean Yates about this year’s, slightly altered, race with an elevation gain of more than 4000 meters.
 
Although the race is decided amongst the main protagonists in the final run into Liège, a strong team is needed in order for the captains to preserve energy.
 
“We are kind of on the up as a team. We had some bad luck Wednesday, which put a few of our guys out of the race. A guy like Valgren has showed that he can be there after 250k, Kiserlovski is well and Chris Anker has been a strong and very valuable support. Rafal had his mechanical in Flèche and his form is a bit uncertain but I think that the lack of pressure will help him at Liège to go further and hopefully he can be a wildcard, since he got nothing to lose”, adds Sean Yates.
 
For Rafal Majka, Liège-Bastogne-Liège will revolve around supporting the team objectives, he says.
 
“I want to do well in Liège and I will do my best to support Roman. For sure, he’s in good shape and he’s both the team leader and road captain on Sunday, since he knows this race really well. We will try to win the race with him but it’s never easy especially not in Liège, which is one of the hardest classics”, says Rafal Majka before adding:
 
“I didn’t feel super strong in Flèche Wallonne but then I also had a mechanical at a very bad time. I hope that my legs respond well on Sunday and that I can help Roman for as long as possible”.

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