Classy Swedish rider Thomas Löfkvist has revealed he hopes to be Team Sky's leader for the Giro d'Italia in 2011 and in return is willing to work for his teammates at the Tour de France.
Löfkvist focused on the Tour de France in 2010, finishing 17th overall, higher than his Sky team leader Bradley Wiggins, but in 2009 had a bit more success in the Giro d'Italia. He wore the best young rider's white jersey for 10 days and finished 25th overall.
"There are many great cyclists who ride Tour. In the Giro, there are more chances for me," Löfkvist told Swedish Eurosport.
"If I get what I want, I will ride as a captain in the Giro and then to help the other riders at the Tour."
The 2011 Giro route was unveiled in Turin last Saturday. It is packed with mountain finishes and only 45km of time trials but this does not deter Löfkvist, who believes he knows how to recover between the Giro and the Tour de France.
"If you use the month in between well, you can benefit from riding the Giro," he said.
Swedish Eurosport cycling expert Roberto Vacchis agreed with Löfkvist's hopes for the 2011 season.
"He has ridden well in Italy and likes Italy. It will be a beautiful race," Vacchis said. "The race is perhaps not easier than the Tour but there are fewer top riders who are chasing victory in the Giro. If he takes another small step, things may go really good."
Night time tests
During the interview, Löfkvist was asked about WADA's call for night time surprise anti-doping testing.
He admitted the tests could be necessary but questioned the effects being woken during the night would have rider's recovery, especially during a three-week stage race.
"There should be a discussion about it before making the taking decision," Löfkvist said.
"I would not be so happy and impressed if they turned up in the middle of the night. It is important to get a full nights sleep. They ought to consider the matter thoroughly before making any decision."
Team Sky is set to hold a get together in mid-November to decide on rider programmes for 2011. Bradley Wiggins is expected to again target the Tour de France but has hinted he will not ride the Giro d'Italia as he has done in the last two years. He is likely to race more often earlier in the season before following a more traditional build-up to the Tour de France.
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