It's fair to say that 2014 has been a season of tremendous highs and resounding lows for Garmin-Sharp's Dan Martin. The Irishman closed his year out with a classy victory at the Tour of Lombardy and added the queen stage of the Tour of Beijing to his ever-growing palmares last week.
However, the second half of Martin's season offered a complete turnaround from the opening few months of a 2014 campaign that was littered with disappointment. He was looking good for the defence of his Liège-Bastogne-Liège crown, attacking in the final kilometre. The gap was there and his rivals were forced to chase but Martin fell on the final corner of the race and was forced to watch on Simon Gerrans (Orica GreenEdge) came away with the win.
Less than a month later and Martin was back in action at the Giro d'Italia start in Belfast. Garmin-Sharp headed in to the opening team time trial full of confidence but in a split second Martin found himself lying on the ground and nursing a broken collar bone, his team scattered around him.
Having missed out on two major objectives in such cruel fashion, Martin was forced to regroup and took the summer to revaluate both his targets. He bounced back with a 7th place overall at the Vuelta a España, his best Grand Tour finish yet, before another crash took him out of contention at the World Championships in Spain.
In this exclusive video for Cyclingnews, shot at the Japan Cup, Martin opens up about the crashes that tore away his chances of success at Liège-Bastogne-Liège and the Giro d'Italia, his fight back to health and fitness, and the feelings he harboured before and after his memorable win at the Tour of Lombardy.
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