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Hansen "wanted to do something"

Australian Adam Hansen (T-Mobile)

Australian Adam Hansen (T-Mobile) (Image credit: Unipublic)

By Susan Westemeyer

T-Mobile's Adam Hansen finished an outstanding tenth in the Vuelta a España's time trial Saturday, his best finish in the race. "I wanted to do something here, so today was my real last day to try," he told Cyclingnews. He finished only 34 seconds behind stage winner Samuel Sanchez.

A week ago, the Australian said that he was "pretty happy with how things were going." This is only his second start in a three-week tour, and the first "didn't count" he noted, as he had to drop out of this year's Giro d'Italia in only the second stage. The first week was hard, and the second went better. How has the final week been?

"I'm happy that I can still perform after three weeks of racing. That's a good sign for my future, but I'm a little disappointed because maybe I didn't go hard enough during the Vuelta. I guess I thought I would be totally dead from all the racing. As it's my first Grand Tour, I didn't know what to expect for this last week. But I'm in much better shape than I thought I would be. But that's a learning curve. Now I know for the next one," he said.

And don't be surprised to see Hansen leading the charge in Madrid on Sunday afternoon, in what he says will be his "hardest race." The reason why is simple: "The race should finish about 5:10 p.m., and my plane out of here is at 6:15 p.m. It's 20 minutes to the airport -- it's not looking good! So I hope I can make it to the flight. Maybe I might sit on the front and keep the pace high, to come in earlier!" he laughed.

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