The Belgian rider has been edging closer to the podium for some time now. “Every year I hope to be good and do a bit better and I hope that I can do it once. I could do it once then it would be a dream for me. I will keep on training and working for it every day,” said Van Den Broeck.
Traditionally the Belgian has ridden the Classics season, favoured by his team, in preparation. He has decided to alter his programme a little, in comparison to previous years. “I just wanted to change a bit and try Romandie instead of the classics and then we will see,” he said. “Sometimes a change can be good.”
In the past the 29-year-old has used the Spanish stage races and the Ardennes classics, before heading to the Dauphiné as preparation for the Tour. Van Den Broeck is one of the few riders who haven’t been swayed by the Giro, “Maybe one day we will switch the programme. At the moment the team still want me to be good at the Tour, because the Tour is the biggest race of the season, with all of the publicity.”
It is unclear who Van Den Broeck will be up against just yet. Defending champion Bradley Wiggins looks like he may return to challenge the Grand Boucle title, after also riding the Giro. Team-mate Chris Froome is also putting his hat in the ring, but the inter-team friction could cause problems. Last year’s third place finisher, Vincenzo Nibali, is looking to win his home grand tour for the first time, with his new Astana team. Alberto Contador has yet to signal where his intentions lie, but is likely to line up in Corsica.
Despite some of the top riders choosing the Giro over the 100th edition of the Tour Van Den Broeck doesn’t third place will be any easier to get, “All of the good and strong guys are still doing the Tour, so it is still going to be difficult.”
The 2013 Tour will start in Corsica on Saturday June 29th and finish in Paris Sunday July 21st.