Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) says he feels great ahead of Milano-San Remo, adding that he intends to follow any attack on the Poggio.
It will be Pogacar’s third outing at the first Monument of the year, having finished fifth in 2022 and 13th in 2021, and in an ominous warning to his rivals ahead of the race, Pogacar said he felt great.
“Yeah, I feel great,” said Pogacar.
The legendary Poggio – at the business end of the 294km ride from Abbiategrasso to San Remo – is expected to prove crucial in deciding the outcome of the World Tour’s longest one-day race, and Pogacar says he will follow any attacks on the climb.
“You need to follow everybody that attacks on the Poggio because it’s too short a climb to play tactics too much. So, you just need to be at the front all the time.”
Wout van Aert (Jumbo–Visma) is expected to be in contention at the end of the race on Saturday. He won Milano-San Remo in 2020 and has not finished outside the top 10 in his other three outings, finishing sixth in 2019, third in 2021 and eighth in 2022.
His preparation was disrupted by illness in February, but he says that he feels ready.
“I’ve won this race before and I would like to win it again,” said Van Aert
“My preparation has been different than I expected. I was sick at the training camp in February, but afterwards I had some really good weeks of training and a hard week of racing in Tirreno. So I feel ready.”
Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck) has finished 13th, fifth and third in his three showings at the year’s opening Monument, and told Eurosport that many riders can win the race.
“I feel quite okay, but it’s a really long race,” said Van der Poel.
“I think it’s a race that many riders can win. And we will see tomorrow if I have the legs to be one of them.”
Asked about potential strategy on Saturday, and whether he would attack on the Poggio, Van der Poel said it depended on how the race played out.
“If you want to attack on the Poggio, you have to have the legs to do it,” he added.
“But you can also win it by just following so it will depend on how the race develops tomorrow.”
The coverage begins on Saturday at 08:45 UK time on Eurosport 2 for the start of the race, all the way to the finish at just before 17:00.
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