Argentinean Sprinter Juan Jose 'JJ' Haedo made a name for himself by winning two stages of the Tour of California and one in the Tour de Georgia while riding for the domestic Toyota United Pro squad. His finishing kick caught the eye of Bjarne Riis, and a year later, the 26 year-old is preparing to start his first Grand Tour for Team CSC.
While he has had an excellent spring campaign, Haedo knows that the Grand Tours will be an entirely different scene. Cyclingnews' Hernan Alvarez spoke with Haedo about his expectations for the Giro d'Italia.
JJ Haedo is heading into the Giro d'Italia after a tremendous spring campaign which saw him take five stage victories in just 46 days. The speedy Argentinean won twostages in the Tour of California, one stage in the Tour of Georgia, and the Colliers Classic in Aarhus (Denmark). But perhaps his most important win was in the Rund um Köln in Germany, where he took on both Graeme Brown and Alessandro Petacchi and came out on top.
Haedo's form is clearly reaching a high point as he heads into his first ever Grand Tour, the prestigious Giro d'Italia. While he has taken on ProTour sprinters and won, battling the likes of Alessandro Petacchi (Team Milram), Norway's Thor Hushovd (Credit Agricole) or Australia's Robbie McEwen (Predictor-Lotto) all at once will be a much more complicated task.
Cyclingnews caught up with the Argentinean rider while he was hurriedly packing his bags in Gerona in preparation for his flight to Italy - or rather, flights. The distance between the two countries is not vast, yet he will fly from Gerona to Barcelona, Barcelona to Rome and then on another flight to the island of Sardinia where the Giro kicks off with a stage one team time trial on Saturday.
Haedo's recent triumph in Aarhus shows was a good confirmation that he is on track for the 'big show'. "The race in Denmark wasn't one of the biggest races, but it was very important for the team, and important to know that I am in a good condition for next week," stated the Argentinean.