Fabian Cancellara has fired a warning shot to Bradley Wiggins ahead of the spring classics, saying that Britain’s first Tour winner is welcome to try to beat him at Paris-Roubaix this year.
“Good luck!” he said when asked what he made of Wiggins' decision to ride Roubaix. “No, good luck!
“With Tour de France weight you’re not going to go anywhere [at Roubaix]. It's everyone’s choice; when Alberto [Contador] wants to join and Andy or Frank [Schleck] or whoever… they are all welcome to Roubaix.”
“In Trouee [Arenberg Forest] it starts. And it finishes in Roubaix with pain.”
Wiggins, who added bulk to his Tour winning physique for last year’s world championships time trial, has outlined a crack at Paris-Roubaix as an early season goal of his before heading to the Tour of California in May.
Cancellara meanwhile will race three consecutive races in the Middle East, continuing from the Dubai Tour and Tour of Qatar at the five-day Tour of Oman when it begins on Tuesday February 18.
While seldom mixing it up with Omega Pharma-Quickstep and Tom Boonen at the front of the race in Qatar, the 32 year old Swiss star is happy to build his condition and stay out of trouble after missing three weeks of training due to illness and injury over the winter.
“I know what I need. I’m not stressed, I’m continuing to do what I have to do,” said Cancellara.
“Of course you sit in the bunch [in Qatar] and you see guys pulling and doing some pain against us. But on the other hand we know what we’ve done, and this is not April. This is February, and it’s still a long way and we know how we are going to progress.”
International cycling news round-up (Dec 20): Greipel crashes; Spanish riders test 2014 Worlds course; Carera returns home; and more
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Richard Abraham is an award-winning writer, based in New Zealand. He has reported from major sporting events including the Tour de France and Olympic Games, and is also a part-time travel guide who has delivered luxury cycle tours and events across Europe. In 2019 he was awarded Writer of the Year at the PPA Awards.
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