Anything less than a gold medal in the mens time trial race at the UCI World Championships will be a disappointment for Tony Martin. The German has won silver for the last two years behind Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland) but is ready to step up to the top step of the podium and become World Champion.
“I have become mentally stronger,” he said, according to the dpa news agency. “I accept the role of the favourite.”
Martin, 26, has had an outstanding year in time trials this season. He has won time trials at the Volta ao Algarve, Paris-Nice, Vuelta al Pais Vasco, and the Criterium du Dauphine, as well as the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana. Cancellara finished only fourth in the Vuelta time trial, and eighth in the Tour.
Martin suggested the course favours his Swiss rival: “When I saw that there were no long straight passages, I had a bit of a bad feeling. I have never ridden a course like this before,” he said.
However he is still optimistic, as he feels mentally and emotionally up to the challenge.
The victory at the Tour “gave me a mental boost. I am more self-confident .... that is more important that just the physical part.” And on a challenging course like in Copenhagen, “the legs aren't everything.”