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January 20/06 7:30 am - Interview: Ryder Hesjedal

Posted by Editoress on 01/20/06

Ryder Hesjedal joined the Phonak team for 2006, after two years with Discovery (last year being his first full year on the road). Earlier in the week we caught up with him in Mallorca, where the team is just finishing up their preseason training camp.

Canadian Cyclist - How's the training camp been going?

Ryder Hesjedal - We've been here for a week and we leave Thursday (January 19th) for the team presentation. It's been a big battery of tests all week; medical tests, performance tests ... we've be (working out) five to six hours a day.

CC - What's the new team like?

RH - It's good. There is perfect support - from the the mechanics to the administration and the sponsors. There is good morale on the team. Everybody wants to accomplish the best they can, to show that the team can win.

CC - What does your schedule look like?

RH - I start at the end of the month with the Tour of Qatar - I did it last year, and we are sending a strong team with sprinters, so we have high expectations. Then it's Setmana Catalana, Het Volk, Paris-Nice, Three Days of de Panne, Flanders, Wevelgem and Paris-Roubaix.

CC - So no Tour of California and no Commonwealth Games?

RH - No, no California; I'll be staying in Europe. As for the Commonwealth Games - look at the (European) schedule. It would be nice (to do the Games), but it doesn't make sense with the commitments I have to the team. Unfortunately, it just didn't work out.

CC - What about later in the season, the Grand Tours (Italy, France, Spain)?

RH - At this point it looks like I'll be doing Dauphine and the Tour of Germany, and hopefully the Worlds. Plus, my schedule will let me come home for the Nationals. I'm looking ahead to representing Canada like at Madrid. I think I can improve on my time trial (he finished 22nd), and I want to work on that event; I'm looking forward to Beijing.


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