Omnipotent leader in the UAE Emirates, Tadej Pogacar will have to deal with the presence of Primoz Roglic by his side during the race of the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Tadej Pogacar did not have time to savor. As soon as he arrived in Paris where he confirmed his victory in the Tour de France, the Slovenian rider had to set course for Tokyo, where he was preparing to participate in the road race on Saturday. With the hope of an incredible double. But the omnipotent UAE leader Emirates will not have it easy on the 234 km around Mount Fuji.
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The route, with five climbs and no less than 4,865 meters of elevation gain, nevertheless seems cut out for him, as evidenced by his overwhelming domination in the mountains on the roads of the Tour de France, with an incredible show of force during the first alpine stage. and two victories in the Pyrenees. But the weather conditions with a temperature blithely exceeding 30 ° and a humidity level which should flirt with 80% will not plead in favor of the native of Klanec as evidenced by his alert on the slopes of Mont-Ventoux.
Roglic dreams of a medal
And while he can count on a team dedicated to his service the rest of the season, even if he rarely needs his teammates to shine, this time he will have to contend with the presence at his side of another great contender. to victory, Primoz Roglic. After having resolved to retire before the start of the 9e stage of the Tour following his fall a few days earlier, the leader of the Jumbo-Visma has indeed turned to the Olympic meeting.
And even if he is not yet “quite 100%”, the former ski jumping champion “Wouldn’t have gone to Japan just to participate”, warned Grischa Niermann, his sports director at Jumbo-Visma. “As a child, I dreamed of an Olympic medal”, besides abounded the winner of the last Vuelta. So Andrej Hauptman, the sports director of the UAE training but also the coach of Slovenia, is responsible for bringing the two men together.
The former sprinter wants to be confident. “Already, it is better to have two runners of this level than none at all. And they like to run together for their country, their flag, the people ”, he assured. And to believe him, his runner at the UAE will not hesitate to put himself at the service of his compatriot if necessary. It will be necessary because Slovenia has only four riders, with Jan Tratnik and Jan Polak to support the two stars.
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