Rasmussen was given an 18-month ban for three violations of the whereabouts requirement, which was originally scheduled to end on April 1. However, the UCI has notified the Danish cycling federation that the ban will now end one month earlier.
“I have a document saying that I can race again as of the first of March, and it is extremely important that I get started as soon as possible,” Rasmussen told politiken.dk. “It is in March that the northern European cycling season really starts, so it is important to be ready there.”
He already has his eyes on his first goal. The Three Days of West Flanders opens with a prologue on March 1. “I will work hard towards that,” he said. “I will certainly be missing some of the rhythm required to succeed, but in a short race like the West Flanders, I think I have very good chances. It would mean a lot to me to prove immediately that I'm back at full strength.”
Rasmussen must, of course, first sign with a team before racing. He was fired by Garmin-Sharp when the ban was announced, but he anticipates returning to the American team. "I have regular contact with the boss Jonathan Vaughters, and although I have not been promised to come back (to the team), I feel that there is a realistic possibility.
"Vaughters has said that he has a vacancy and that it will not be filled by someone else. On the other hand, he has not given me a clear message that it is mine.”
Even if that falls through, “I am convinced that in any case I will race again.” He wants to stay at the WorldTour level, but if not, “there are other ways. I shall certainly be going again. "