My name is Elin - A pro cycling lover's reflections

Gesink plans to ride Tour of California and Tour de France

Category: Cycling

Robert Gesink crashedRobert Gesink (Belkin) did not have the season that he had wished for, but he good a morale boost as he won the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec. Next year, he wants to ride and challenge the Tour de France next July.

Gesink has now finalized his racing schedule for the coming season. He will skip the Giro d'Italia and instead ride the Tour of California and the Tour de France.
"I want to do the Tour of California and I'll try and be really good there. Then I'll stay there and train. Hopefully I'll win California but that's not an easy thing. It's not like I win 25 races a year and can just pick but I'll give it my best. I don't know how but I seem to do better on the other side of the ocean than here," he told Cyclingnews.

"But next year is a new challenge with new hopes and new goals and again I'd like to go for GC in the Tour de France."

Gesink has often been mentioned as a grand tour rider of potential. However, it's not always easy to fulfill what people expect for you. He is still young though, and his record still stands up against the majority of his rivals.

"If you look at the results, I've done things that people from Holland haven't done in the last thirty years. It's sport and at the highest level sometimes it works out how you want and sometimes it doesn't. That's just the way it is," he says.

He has finished in the top ten in nearly half the grand tours he has ridden. It is not at all bad.

This season he started the Giro d'Italia with high hopes of challenging for the maglia rosa, and he did have a great opening week. However, illness struck in the final half of the race and eventually, he was forced to abandon.

"I went with high expectations to the Giro and was in good shape after ten days. Then I got sick and it didn't work out as planned. From there it was hard to be on the highest level again at the Tour so I had a different role there. It was good to do that but it's not something I want to do too much in the future because I'm still only 27 and I think there are more possibilities for myself in the future," he told Cyclingnews.

"The last part of the season was perfect. I won in Quebec and was really strong in Montreal but maybe I just wanted it too much and wasn't that clever. Then in Lombardia I was top ten and the same in Beijing."

Often people seem to just focus of what is happening at the moment. If an athlete does great things today, then he/she is a hero. If he/she has a tough season, nobody cares about them. Everybody has a bad time every now and then. It is normal. People should look more at the big picture, because a bad year is not the end of the world.

In 2011, Gesink crashed and broke his leg. Since then people tend to see him as a consistent faller. But the true fact is that he has not had any severe crashes lately. He did not have a bad fall for a year, but some people just "look to what went wrong," Gesink says.

"Of course I had an accident and broke my leg in training but I've also won a lot of nice races. If I was a bad bike handler then it would be different but that's not the case. That's how it works sometimes, it's easy to understand someone if you put a label on them. If you get a few articles like that then you're pushed into a corner a bit but I think I've changed. I can remember Wiggins crashed out of the Tour in 2011 but I don't think people remember him as a guy who always crashed. Now they remember him as the guy who won a Tour and then he was the guy who couldn't even go through a corner."

"I've done more than just crashing and I think that should be looked at. The funny thing is I don't think about it that much, it's not an issue. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn't."
Say something: