Remco Evenepoel says he’s in top form as he looks for victory in his first time riding a Monument at Il Lombardia this weekend.
The Belgian star will be taking on the Italian one-day race for the first time, but he is confident in his abilities and says he’s never been more prepared for a race.
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Evenepoel has won all four stage races he’s entered this year and has taken at least one stage in all of them, as he has come back to the reset cycling season in peerless form.
The 20-year-old told cycling website Weilerflits: “This is my first peak of the year and I’m ready for it.
“I’m in top form and I’ve never prepared for a race so well.”
Deceuninck – Quick-Step rider Evenepoel has been phenomenal ever since he joined the WorldTour last season, racking up 14 pro wins already.
But the young rider is still developing as he is set to make his Monument debut in Italy on Saturday (August 15) and ride his first Grand Tour at the Giro d’Italia later this year.
The tough profile of Lombardia suits Evenepoel, who has won tough climbing days at the Vuelta a Burgos and the Tour of Poland in the last few weeks.
He also took victory in the 2019 Clásica San Sebastián, which is a similar style of one-day race to Lombardia.
Evenepoel added: “I know the turns, I know how tough the climbs are – that’s important in a one-day race.
“It’s all or nothing. You can correct something in a stage race, but not in a Classic.”
Many of the top climbers in the pro peloton will be absent from Lombardia, as the race clashes with the Critérium du Dauphiné during the redesigned season, but Evenepoel will still face tough competition.
Former winners Vincenzo Nibali and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) are scheduled to ride, alongside Jumbo-Visma’s George Bennett who won Gran Piemonte this week.