Jasper Stuyven has stated that Paris-Roubaix is the Classic he'd most like to win in 2022, adding "I'm hoping for a dry Roubaix."
However, his main priority is focusing on entering the spring Classics in the best form possible, in a bid to be in the mix in as many showdowns as he can.
The Trek-Segafredo rider won Milan-San Remo in 2021, his first Monument victory in his career. Speaking at a press conference at the team's training camp, he seemed relaxed as preparations get underway for next season.
When asked if he's prioritising one of Paris-Roubaix or Tour of Flanders more, the Belgian rider made it clear that while he'd prefer to win the former race, he needs to enter spring riding in top form.
Stuyven told Cycling Weekly: "For me there's all the Classics, and, of course, I've been asked the question a few times 'if you had to choose one which would it be', and in my case that would be Roubaix.
"But I think targeting to be in my best possible shape for those three weeks is my first goal."
With Paris-Roubaix returning to it's usual Spring time-slot, albeit one week later than normal due to the French elections, Stuyven explained that past experience doesn't necessarily help - especially when he's hoping for less challenging weather than the washout 2021 event won by Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Victorious).
Asked if experience is an asset at Paris-Roubaix, he answered: "I hope not, because I'm hoping for a dry Roubaix."
"It was such a different race. It's so particular that [knowledge of a wet race is] not something you can take into a dry Roubaix."
The 29-year-old added that there will be plenty of opportunity to scope out the terrain in advance this year, stating: "We always do a lot of recon testing of the new equipment on the cobbles. We do go there quite often."
Heading into the new season with a Monument win, Stuyven seems a lot more relaxed. He stated that winning Milan-San Remo has made him more motivated to keep on winning Classics races. Staying relaxed, he explains, will perhaps give him more confidence too.
Reflecting on his impressive Italian win, Stuyven also believes his victory has helped other riders in the peloton believe they too can win cycling's biggest races - rather than succumb to the dominance of Tadej Pogačar and Primož Roglič.
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Hi, I'm a Trainee News Writer at Cycling Weekly.
I have worked for Future across its various sports titles since December 2020, writing news for Cycling Weekly, FourFourTwo, Golf Monthly, Rugby World and Advnture. I am currently studying for a NCTJ qualification alongside my role as Trainee News Writer at the company.
Prior to joining Future I attended Cardiff University, earning a degree in Journalism & Communications.
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