Evans: BMC will need to be an even stronger unit to combat RadioShack-Nissan in 2012
Australian also still focused on Olympic gold
In his 16th year as a professional cyclist there is little that someone like Cadel Evans (BMC) can learn or brush up on before the European racing season starts early next month. The Australian does however have an important focus for the training camp the team is currently holding just outside of Valencia, Spain.
"For us as a team, the off-season, camps like this, that's where I think it's going to be important for us to get things functioning well," said Evans. "It's going to be important to be able to take on the [RadioShack-Nissan] team and so on.
"To do that I really want to make sure we're all there firing on all cylinders - that's why we're here."
The RadioShack-Nissan team has all the makings of a super team, with both Schlecks, Andreas Klöden, Fabian Cancellara and Chris Horner - all directed by Johan Bruyneel. To combat them Evans believes the team must be at its best, as it was last July.
The biggest asset Evans may take however is a renewed level of confidence, in himself, and his ability. Winning a Tour de France he explained, a Grand Tour, was a personal confirmation that he really needed.
"It's like a stamp of approval," said Evans. "I always believed in myself, but now I suppose everyone will believe in me and my competitors included. "In that regard, you go in with a different mindset and also your competitors go against you with a different mindset.
"If things go well for us, I think we can be successful again."
Evans also spoke on his other big goal for 2012 outside the Tour, his dream to win gold in an Olympic games, something that has eluded him ever since his mountain biking days.
"The Olympics for me, it's more about national pride, something different to the Tour."
"I want to give myself every chance to go for another medal, because it's something that I don't have. The day the Tour finishes, I will be working 100 per cent for the Olympics.
"The motivation is the same as it is for another yellow jersey - that's for sure. I go to win."
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Alex Hinds, Production Editor
Alex Hinds is a graduate of Economics and Political Science from Sydney University. Growing up in the metropolitan area of the city he quickly became a bike junkie, dabbling in mountain and road riding. Alex raced on the road in his late teens, but with the time demands of work and university proving too much, decided not to further pursue full-time riding.
If he was going to be involved in cycling in another way the media seemed the next best bet and jumped at the opportunity to work in the Sydney office of Cyclingnews when an offer arose in early 2011.
Though the WorldTour is of course a huge point of focus throughout the year, Alex also takes a keen interest in the domestic racing scene with a view to helping foster the careers of the next generation of cycling.
When not writing for Cyclingnews Alex is a strong proponent of the awareness of cyclists on the road in Sydney having had a few close run-ins with city traffic in the past.