Swiss captain remains focussed on ambitious goal for road and time trial titles
Swiss Fabian Cancellara remains concentrated on winning both the World Championship time trial and road race this week on home soil, in Mendrisio, Switzerland.
"I want to win the road race and the time trial, but naturally only one of them would be fine," he told Italy's Sport Week. "Yes, if you train well the two days of recovery are enough. Then there is the mental strength, which can change how it unfolds for me."
Cancellara is a two-time time trial World Champion (2006 and 2007) and the reigning Olympic time trial champion. This season he has won time trials at the Tour of California, Tour de Suisse, Tour de France and Vuelta a España. He also won the Tour de Suisse overall classification and the Swiss Championship road race title in June. The latter stands as his only road race victory of the season.
Cancellara said he feels the pressure of being the one rider that Swiss eyes will be focussed upon to win a Worlds title. "People expect a lot out of me, everything, and not only at the Worlds. I try not to overwhelm myself because I am not a machine.
"A lot of people think the time trial is already decided. Many things can happen the day of the race. I remind myself that I am not obligated to win and that lessens the pressure."
Defending time trial champion Bert Grabsch (Germany) is Cancellara's biggest rival, he said. Cancellara acknowledged that if he pushes himself too hard on Thursday, he could rule himself out of the road race Sunday.
This year's road course has two climbs, the Acqua Fresca and Novazzano. The Elite men will repeat the short 13.8-kilometre circuit 19 times, for a total of 262.2 kilometres that will include 4655 metres of climbing.
"Italy and Spain are the strongest nations. [Damiano] Cunego is flying," Cancellara continued. "I am less afraid of the Belgians. Luxembourg is out of the running."
Cancellara's highest place finish in the Worlds road race was 31st in 2006 in Salzburg, Austria.
He wants to try to win Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Ronde van Vlaanderen and Amstel Gold in the coming years, he said. He also listed the London Olympics and the hour record as goals for the future.
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