Julian Alaphilippe: Strade Bianche deserves to be a Monument

OUDENAARDE BELGIUM OCTOBER 18 Julian Alaphilippe of France and Team Deceuninck QuickStep World Champion Jersey Mathieu Van Der Poel of The Netherlands and Team AlpecinFenix Breakaway during the 104th Tour of Flanders 2020 Ronde van Vlaanderen Men Elite a 2433km race from Antwerpen to Oudenaarde RVV20 FlandersClassic on October 18 2020 in Oudenaarde Belgium Photo by Nico Vereecken PoolGetty Images
Julian Alaphilippe on the attack (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

The rainbow jersey can inspire or it can inhibit, but few riders have ever been unchanged by the experience of wearing it. Julian Alaphilippe's aggressive start to the 2021 season suggests a man eager to live up to his status as world champion, but he maintains that it is simply in keeping with the approach that carried him to the title in the first place.

"For me, the best way to honour this jersey is to stay true to what I've always been. True to my style of racing, to the way I got this jersey, which was by attacking and going on the offensive," Alaphilippe told reporters on Thursday evening. 

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.