By Greg Johnson in Adelaide, Australia
Silence-Lotto's Robbie McEwen is one of Australia's fastest men on a bike. The pint-sized McEwen has the acceleration and accuracy of a cruise missile in a stage sprint, but it's the latter of these traits he's hoping to apply to the timing of his peak fitness in 2008.
Mighty McEwen's magic sprint hasn't headlined at the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic or the Australian nationals in 2008, as it has in previous years. Instead the Queenslander is delaying his peak fitness as he did in 2007, in the hope of hitting his targets in March.
"Well like you say you haven't heard much of me during the summer, I haven't raced as much as the last couple of years and that was a conscious choice as I'm aiming a bit further into the season," he explained.
McEwen has won more stages than any other rider at South Australia's Tour Down Under. The rider has claimed an impressive 12 stage victories during the event's nine years in existence, but the Queenslander is a little unsure how his March plans will affect his performance in this year's race.
"Although I'd like to lie to you and say I'm going really good and I'm up, I'm not quite at the level I have been in my best years at the Tour Down Under, but I'm certainly not bad," said McEwen. "I hope over the course of the week to ride myself into the race and maybe a bit like last year pop up on the last day, but it I get a chance before that I'll try and take it too."
To read the full feature on Robbie McEwen, click here.