McEwen after Paris-Tours success

Robbie McEwen (Davitamon-Lotto) wants to finish his season on a high note by winning Sunday's Paris-Tours, the penultimate race in the ProTour series. McEwen will return to his home away from home on the Gold Coast in Australia on Tuesday, together with Angelique, who is pregnant with the couple's second child. But before then, he'd like another victory.

"It would also immediately be the best win in my career," McEwen said to Het Nieuwsblad. "Twice in Paris-Tours, I was in the group that was going for the win. That was in 1996 as a neo-pro when Nicola Minali was faster than Tom Steels. I was 13th then, my best result. In 2002, I got another chance. Zabel won in front of a frustrated Petacchi and I was boxed in and was only 18th. Third time lucky, maybe."

Like many of the top sprinters, McEwen has had a long season, racing and already winning on January 1. "Actually I've almost never been off the bike," he said. "I'm happy that I'll be back home again soon, but even when I rest, I still get that thing out of the shed."

For tomorrow's race, McEwen hopes that some of the other teams will ride for a bunch sprint, not just Davitamon-Lotto and T-Mobile. "Just like Zabel, I have to look for other allies. Like Hushovd, Nazon, Bennati...because Paris-Tours comes so late in the season, it's a difficult race to control anyway. This is a select classic for the motivated riders. As a team you have to be damn well organised. It's not good for me that Van Petegem, Mattan, and Van Bon won't be there for various reasons."

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