UAE Tour - Tadej Pogacar: I’m in the defending position and Almeida needs to attack
Feb 22 2021 11:38 pm CET

UAE Tour - Tadej Pogacar: I’m in the defending position and Almeida needs to attack
UAE Tour - Tadej Pogacar: I’m in the defending position and Almeida needs to attack
Photo of Tadej Pogacar (c)UAE Team Emirates/Fizza

UAE Team Emirates' Tadej Pogacar has taken the lead of the General Classification of the UAE Tour after showing a good performance in the race's individual time trial.

The winner of the 2020 Tour de France has started his season with the right foot and after surviving unscathed a day full of echelons, he went onto making the fourth best time at the fight against the clock. He was 24 seconds slower than the winner of the day, Filippo Ganna (Ineos-Grenadiers).

"I knew before the time trial that my shape is good at the moment and in the end, I did a really good time trial and I’m super happy with the result," said Pogacar. "Having the leader’s jersey is very good for us. We can go into the upcoming stages with confidence. It was pan-flat today but I actually like that a lot. I train on the flat just as much as on the mountains. Sometimes I prefer the mountains but sometimes I also enjoy riding on the flat, especially in time trials, which is a very nice discipline. I really like to race on the TT bike.

"Today, I was more focusing on myself and doing the best time I could than focusing on Joao Almeida’s abilities. It did matter to me though before the start how good he’d do. I knew he’d be good. As for me, I actually didn’t expect anything. I was just riding for myself. I think I’ve just done my best TT - for this short length. It was a really good performance from my perspective.

"Five seconds lead over Almeida is not a lot but it is an advantage. I’m in the defending position and he needs to attack. It’s easier to control than to have to make up time. But there are still five stages left and many things can happen. Tomorrow it’s the hardest mountain-top finish. I hope for the best legs I can have. It is a bit of an advantage to know Jebel Hafeet well from last year and from our training camps over here but up the hill, it’s a matter of power more than knowledge of every meter of the climb. At the top, the best rider wins. I just want to be first at the top."
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TADEJ POGAČAR
UAE TEAM EMIRATES





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