Tadej Pogacar sans crainte au départ du Tour de France 2022 : "On se fait confiance, ça aide à être relax"

Tadej Pogacar sans crainte au départ du Tour de France 2022 : “On se fait confiance, ça aide à être relax”

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A clever mix. Tadej Pogacar already gives the impression of knowing all the tricks of the trade, when he has to slalom between trick questions. But the Slovenian prodigy still exudes a feeling of innocence that reminds us that he is only 23 years old. The press conference he held with his UAE Emirates team, this Thursday, the day before the start of the Tour de France, thus transpired peace of mind.
  • Watch the Tour de France live on Eurosport starting on Friday

I don’t think about history that much, almost not at all.”, replied the double title holder, when he was asked about the prospect of integrating the caste of the triple winners of the Grande Boucle. His preparation wasgood, not very different from last year“.”I may even be a little more confident“, warns Pogacar, who has just won his National Tour… as in 2021.

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We don’t need to be aggressive or defensive

His versatility can allow him to wait for the high mountains to hit, as well as to take advantage of a lead cut for classic specialists. But for him, there is no debate about the appropriate moment to reveal himself: “The first week is difficult, with possibilities of curbs, cobblestones, the bridge… but we are a very strong, united team, we do not need to be aggressive or defensive.”

We just gotta be in the right place and we’re ready for it“, summed up Pogacar. This first week, Rafal Majka could be of invaluable support to him. Their complicity, striking during the Tour of Slovenia, was further illustrated on Thursday. When the Polish climber, present during of this press briefing, compared the time he spends with his wife and the time he shares with his leader, the two men laughed heartily.

Hilarious Tadej Pogacar, at a press conference, on the eve of the start – Tour de France 2022

Credit: Getty Images

Pogacar-Vingegaard, from laughter to tears

This burst of laughter echoed the presentation of the teams on Wednesday in Copenhagen, from where the Tour de France (July 1-24) will start on Friday. On the stage, “Pogi” made his one-man show. A few minutes earlier, Jonas Vingegaard had appeared there with misty eyes, won over by the emotion of a home start, which adds a dose of pressure to him. The contrast is significant, between the attitude of Pogacar and that of his runner-up last year.
A dolphin that Tadej Pogacar esteems, according to his words. The headliner of the UAE Emirates team refused to establish a hierarchy between his challengers, in a very agreed speech: “There are three weeks of racing, so many very strong teams and riders…“But he praised the qualities of Vingegaard, “one of the best climbers in the world” who coexists with Primoz Roglic at Jumbo-Visma: “He has proven that he can be good on a Grand Tour, he is very complete.”

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I don’t think I can (win the clock)

It was with a majestic time trial that Pogacar shocked the world of cycling and conquered his first Tour de France, in 2020. From the 1st stage, he could be expected on the podium, hence a calm d all the more disarming. “I have important people around me, among my team, my friends, a good environment that doesn’t put pressure on me. We trust each other, it helps to be relaxed before the biggest race in the world”he explains.

As for this first round of 13.2 kilometers, he does not approach it as a favourite, even if he is not afraid to take control too early – “you never say no to the yellow jersey”: “I don’t think not be able (to win the time, editor’s note), I will do my best, each time for me is a different story. As each Tour begins with a blank page. But Pogacar has always written the victorious epilogue, in two essays.

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