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Van Avermaet thinks he can become world champion

By:
Cycling News
Published:
August 04, 2014, 15:20 BST,
Updated:
August 04, 2014, 16:22 BST
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, August 5, 2014
Race:
UCI Road World Championships, Men's Elite Road Race
Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)

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Belgian still looking for season’s first win

Greg Van Avermaet has had a successful 2014 season, although he is still looking for his first win this year. Being the BMC leader in a number of races has given him “extra confidence” and he feels he can go on to become world champion at the event held from September 21-28 in Ponferrada, Spain..

The 29-year-old was the team leader in the Spring Classics, finishing second in both the Omloop het Nieuwsblad and the Tour of Flanders. Over the season he has brought in 14 top-10 finishes, most recently finishing eighth in the Clasica San Sebastian

"It is, of course, always annoying that I can’t ‘shoot the main bird’ (win a race, ed.). Currently there is no killer in me,” he said on Sportweekend, according to Sporza.be.

“There’s a winner in me, but he is on holiday this year, I think.”

But he believes that his time has come. “I am now 29 years old and I think I have ridden enough for others. I've been in all sorts of situations and I've proven that I can handle the events of the spring. Then you want to be the leader.”

His next goal this year is the world championship in Ponferrada. “It's a course that suits me. It's easier than last year, but it's something for Classic riders who can climb.

"It is likely that a small group will come to the finish. In that case, I am one of the fastest guys in the peloton. I can become world champion, but things need to go right.”

Van Avermaet feels he has proven himself this season and that he has gained more confidence after BMC gave him the leadership role at many races. “Being the leader also gives me extra confidence. Having the whole team riding for me is the biggest change for me this year.

"I also feel that I get better every year. They often say that you win Classics in your 30s, so my best years are coming.”

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