After a five-week break from racing, Dominik Klemme (Saxo Bank) is looking to hit the ground running when he lines up for the Tour of Poland, August 1. The German will use the seven-day race as preparation for his first tilt at a Grand Tour, at the Vuelta, which starts August 28.
"The training has been going well," Klemme told Cyclingnews. "I've had five weeks off and went for a holiday. But since then I've really ramped things up with a week at altitude followed by a week of interval training. Now I'm ready for Poland."
Klemme had a busy start to the season, performing solidly throughout the spring, and finishing 14th in his first Paris-Roubaix.
"I don't know how my form will be in the first race back, but if I'm good I'll try something. But of course I'm there to help the other riders, too."
After Poland, Klemme will ramp up his preparation for the Vuelta by racing the Tour du Limousin and GP Ouest France in Plouay. Despite the Vuelta being his first Grand Tour, the 23-year-old has already set himself a number of goals, both within the team and on a personal level.
"With Fränk [Schleck] there and ready, I'll work as best as I can for him. He wants to do a good overall but I think I'll have a few chances on a few stages too," said Klemme.
"I've had some good results this year, but I'm still looking for a win. Roubaix was a good race for me in the spring and I've learnt a lot again. Next year I want to step up another level. With a Vuelta in my legs that should help me kick on."
With Saxo Bank set to leave the sport and his contract up for grabs, Klemme has a few possibilities already on the table for next season.
"I have some options but I've not made a decision yet. I'll make a decision in the next couple of weeks."