Adam Yates is not shy about targeting a tilt at the Olympic Games road race this summer, but first he has to secure his spot on the team for Rio – something he is keen to kickstart at this week’s Tour de Yorkshire.
The 23-year-old is in Britain to compete in the second edition of the Tour de Yorkshire, taking place from April 29 until May 1.
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The race will see the return of some of the world’s best cycling teams in the world to take part in one of the biggest cycling events in the UK calendar.
But while fully focussed on the task at hand, Yates can’t help but let his mind wander to Rio.
The 256.4km race in Brazil is set to be a challenging course with current world champion Peter Sagan already having declared it will be too hilly for him to consider a podium finish.
The race profile should play into the hands of Yates, a natural going uphill, with 11 climbs including an 8.9km ramp which will be tackled three times during the race and is expected to be where a decisive move may be made before the 20km flat run-in to the finish.
Great Britain’s recent successes in road cycling, including three Tour de France victories in the last four years from Sir Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome, mean they will be able to field a strong team in the race, and Yates is hoping to be a part of it.
“I would like to go, it would be a great opportunity to try something there,” said the Orica- GreenEdge rider.
“The course looks good for me but I will have to make sure I gain selection first. If I do well in the Tour de France then we will see.
“We have got the maximum roster of five riders and obviously with Chris Froome there then if he is going for the Tour de France he will have good form coming out of that race.
“Hopefully I make selection because it will be a good course for me and we will try and do something.”
Your essential guide to the Tour de Yorkshire
The Olympic course will start and finish in Flamengo Park and will take in some of Rio de Janeiro’s most recognisable locations, including the Copacabana beach.
Before that though he tackles the roads of Yorkshire this week before going on to the Critérium du Dauphiné in June and then the Tour de France in July.
Yates will be making his debut in the Yorkshire race this year but already has his eyes on the overall win.
“I’m not targeting any stages in particular but the general classification is a big objective so we will see what we can do,” added the reigning Clasica de San Sebastian champion.
“With Orica we come here with a very strong team and hopefully we can pull something off.
“The team is going really well, from strength to strength – with Matt Hayman just coming off a win in Paris-Roubaix the team is full of confidence.
“We are on a high and I am sure we will bring that confidence to the Tour de Yorkshire.”
“With the crowds in England it is a super cool race to do and it is always a pleasure to come back here.”
Adam Yates was speaking on behalf of Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries, a partnership between Yorkshire Bank and Cycle Yorkshire. For further information visit www.ybonline.co.uk/bikelibraries
Yates was getting a sneak peek into what he can expect this week as he supported the Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries scheme.
It’s an initiative designed to deliver a county-wide cycling legacy for all generations through refurbishing unloved, used or broken bikes – something Yates was keen to throw his support behind.
“The Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries is a great initiative,” Yates said. “It is great for kids or anyone really just to get involved.
“Cycling is going from strength to strength, year on year and hopefully it will keep building.
“And I am sure with schemes like the Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries I am sure cycling as a whole will keep on improving in this country.”