RadioShack-Nissan rider Jakob Fuglsang began this season hoping to lead his team in the Giro d’Italia, but as we head into the second half of August he would settle for a ride in any WorldTour race.
Having announced his intention to leave at the end of the season, the Dane has found himself frozen out of any top division races by a team determined not to allow him to pick up points to take to Astana in 2013. And when he spoke to Cycling News HD, his frustration was evident.
Looking back, your season has been quite up and down, what is your assessment of it?
“All in all I am pretty pleased with my season, especially as I managed to win two races in the Tours of Luxembourg and Austria. But it was, of course, not what I expected going into the season. The big disappointment was not to be able to go to the Giro. It was mainly to do with a crash I had in Catalunya and a knee injury that came up after that. That was a big disappointment, but I showed the desire to come back, and that even when it isn’t going to plan I will still give 100 per cent and keep fighting.”
Did you think you would get another chance to lead at a Grand Tour?
“I knew it would be difficult, but I was hoping to ride the Tour; maybe not as captain, but to show what I could do. From then on I just took it as it came. I was then hoping I might get the Vuelta, when I didn’t make it on the Tour team, but then as things turned out there was no Vuelta for me either.”
Did you get an explanation as to why you were removed from the Tour’s long list?
”I think it is the same reason as why I am not able to ride any WorldTour races. I know that Johan thought that I’d already signed for Saxo Bank before the Tour de Suisse, which was not true.”
You spoke out about the team and Johan, is that something you regret or do you stand by it?
”No I stand by what I said, I don’t regret it. I said the truth and what I was feeling. I think you should be disappointed as a bike rider, who wants to compete, when one of your objectives gets taken away, even though you are showing good form. Then I think you have the right to be disappointed.”
Do you think you can convince the team to allow you to ride WorldTour races or is that you done for the season?
”I hope that in the end they might allow me to do some WorldTour races, but it is Johan’s decision. I would love to, but it is up to him. There are still some races that I would love to do, even if you count out the Vuelta.”
Cycling News HD
The full version of this exclusive interview with Jakob Fuglsang is just one example of what you can find inside our new digital magazine, Cycling News HD. Delivered to your iPad every Wednesday, Cycling News HD brings you the best all-new cycling photography in the world via the best medium for viewing it, as well as reports, results and exclusive analysis of all the week’s biggest races, in-depth previews of the races and stages to watch in the week ahead, interviews, news and opinion.
With over 50 pages packed with new and original content every Wednesday, alongside all the latest reports and results, Cycling News HD is the best way to enjoy a roadside seat at all the season’s biggest and best races. Download the recent version of CN HD here.