Roglic: “Evenepoel didn’t have to show me that he was so good”

Primoz Roglic is already looking to the 2023 season after a year of 2022 in which two falls in the Tour and in the Vuelta deprived him of fighting for the general classification in both races. As if this were not enough, Roglic, 33, underwent shoulder surgery to ease the pain that will cause his season start to be postponed.

Roglic gave an interview to the Dutch outlet WielerFlits in which he recounted why he underwent this intervention and assured that he plans to compete again in March. “I couldn’t take the pain in my shoulder anymore. She could barely sleep. It’s very painful when his arm gets out of his way and he had to do something about it. There was no other solution other than an operation. The latest tests show that everything has grown back and that it has already been cured, and allowed me to join the team’s concentration in Denia. I may not make it to the Tour Down Under and I hope to ride my first races in March. What will my season be like? It’s a mystery, it doesn’t make sense to say now if I’m going to run the Giro, the Tour or La Vuelta”.

The Slovenian was also asked if he intends to run the Giro, where he finished third in 2019 despite being the leader in the first five stages, although he believes that in 2023 he will not. “I would like to run the Giro again. In 2023? I don’t know, first I have to recover one hundred percent to think about my goals. But I think the Giro will come very soon next season, So I wonder if it’s better to start the Giro one hundred percent next year or if it would be better to have more time and prepare in the best possible way for the Tour”.

For this reason, Roglic considers the Tour de France as a great objective for 2023, a race in which he had to abandon in 2021 and in this 2022 after losing the lead dramatically in 2020. ”Of course my work on the Tour is not done yet. The future will tell if it is possible to win it. I want to return to the Tour and the first mission will be to get to Paris. After two hard years, the most important thing is to finish the degree, but of course I want to finish at the top of the standings. The next edition will be special with Jonas Vingegaard wearing number one and we will try to defend the Jumbo-Visma title”

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The Slovenian also talked about his work in helping Vingegaard win on the decisive day at the Col du Granon. “I like that so many people applauded the team’s work on the day of the Granon. I thought it would be good to liven up the race at Galibier, I knew that I wasn’t running for my chances to win the general classification, but that the objective was to wear down Pogacar and work for Vingegaard. I was surprised by the result, it was better than we expected, although it was hard to leave the Tour a few days later. At that moment he already knew that Jonas would win the Tour ”.

Roglic also wanted to talk about his future and despite his 33 years he still sees himself competing at the highest level for several years. “I’m sure I can still win the Tour, why not? It is not about the results, but about the effort you make to achieve that goal. I see myself riding at the highest level for at least four more years. Valverde or Nibali have achieved great success at an advanced age. Why can’t I do it?”

The Jumbo-Visma cyclist was also asked about the battle with Evenepoel during the last Tour of Spain and, despite acknowledging the Belgian’s talent, he regretted not having been able to compete against him in the last stages after retiring due to a fall. “Evenepoel didn’t surprise me in the Tour of Spain, he didn’t have to show me that he was that good. He had already won important races before the Vuelta and we all know how talented and strong he is. I was prepared to have a great duel with him in the final week of the Vuelta and I was really looking forward to it. of those last mountain stages. In the Vuelta I was getting better every day, but unfortunately…”

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