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Martin draws lessons from 2010 mistakes

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German Tony Martin (Columbia-HTC) in the best young rider's white jersey.

German Tony Martin (Columbia-HTC) in the best young rider's white jersey. (Image credit: sirott)
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Germany's Tony Martin wasn't in the race for elite men's time trial gold, but given he took bronze despite a flat tyre you can't help but wonder what could have been.

Germany's Tony Martin wasn't in the race for elite men's time trial gold, but given he took bronze despite a flat tyre you can't help but wonder what could have been. (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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HTC-Columbia's Tony Martin finished sixth on the stage.

HTC-Columbia's Tony Martin finished sixth on the stage. (Image credit: Mark Johnson/www.ironstring.com)

Tony Martin won his first stage race and a bronze at the world championship time trial, but was still not satisfied with his 2010 season. The talented German HTC-Columbia rider has figured out what went wrong and is determined not to repeat the same mistakes.

Martin, who is only in his third year as a professional, won three races this year, all individual time trials. However his win in the closing time trial at the Eneco Tour was enough to seal overall victory -his first ever stage race success. He also took the German national time trial title and finished third in the world championships for the second consecutive year.

But the 25-year old was disappointed because he had hoped for much more. His goal going into the Tour de France was to beat Fabian Cancellara in the time trial and do well overall. Instead, he finished second in both time trials behind Cancellara and finished the Tour de France in 137th place.

“That was the really big disappointment,” he told the German website otz.de

"There were two reasons for his poor performance. “I will definitely never again change my seat position in January,” he said. “ will make that mistake only once.” That small change led to tendon problems in his right knee, which cost him important training.

After that came the second problem. Once the knee was healed, he overdid it in racing and training. “I rode the Tour of California in May with a lot of commitment, then the Tour de Suisse and then did some hard Tour training. That was too intensive.” The result - he went into the Tour with tired legs.

He ended his season at the world championships and then took a two-week vacation on the Maldives Islands, where he spent an hour a day in the gym. Next weekend he will ride the criterium race in Curaçao after a last-minute invitation.

Martin has big goals for the coming season. “In cycling, only the Tour de France counts. I would like to bring in a stage win there and ride into the top ten.”