Wednesday, October 27, 2021
HomeOtherPress ReleasesMichal Kwiatkowski Eyes Cobbles Return in 2018

Michal Kwiatkowski Eyes Cobbles Return in 2018

-

Michal Kwiatkowski is hoping to tackle the Tour of Flanders this season as he looks to continue his momentum following a standout 2017 campaign.

The Pole enjoyed arguably the best 12 months of his career with marquee victories at Strade Bianche, Milan-San Remo and Clasica San Sebastian, before heading to the Tour de France to help wingman Chris Froome to a fourth title.

After a winter of hard training the 27 year old is ready to go again, starting with the upcoming Vuelta a Valenciana.

Michal Kwiatkowski
Michal Kwiatkowski. Photo©Team Sky

Explained Kwiatkowski on his Flanders hopes;

“I was just missing cobbles… the Classics for me are pure racing and Tour of Flanders is just an amazing race. I was able to race there before, and also for Team Sky in 2016. The week before that I won (E3) Harelbeke and I was one of the favourites for the win. I believe I have the ability to fight for the victory. Whatever happens there, together with my teammates, whoever is going to be there, we are able to be there as favourites and future winners. That’s why I want to be a part of it. Let’s hope it’s going to be a good one.”

‘Kwiato’ is under no illusions that topping 2017 will take some doing, but feels that striving for constant improvements should put him right back in the mix for victories.

“Looking at the upcoming season the first thing I’m thinking about is improvements. That word describes everything. Of course it can be difficult to repeat the results I got in 2017, but of course I will be there to train harder, to race better and to race smarter. Let’s hope that will bring even more victories than I had.

“If you look at my race calendar for sure that’s going to be quite similar to the previous season. Of course in the first part I’d love to aim to win Liege-Bastogne-Liege – a race I still haven’t been able to win in my career. That’s going to be the first big goal. On top of that races like Strade Bianche and Milan-San Remo again. That’s the first part of the year, and then there’s the Tour and I’d love to be back racing with Team Sky for the victory.”

With the World Championships taking place on hilly Austrian soil in 2018, the 2014 rainbow jersey winner is also eyeing up another big change – taking the road to Innsbruck-Tirol via the Vuelta a Espana.

Laying out some potential hopes for later in the season he added:

“I think a big change would be if I could put a second Grand Tour in a single season. So after the Tour if everything goes well let’s hope I can race the Vuelta and then prepare as best as I can for the World Champs in Austria.”

Understandably Kwiatkowski has fond memories of 2017, and is particularly proud of the consistent high level of form he showed.

“The biggest reflection from 2017 was the way I was racing across the entire season. That was the most important thing for me, that I could actually race at the highest level all the time and I was there in the game to win the races. That was really important for me. And because of that I could win such big races as Strade Bianche, Milan-San Remo and San Sebastian. Those were my best moments of the season, and of course the Tour de France was such an amazing race. I never expected from myself that I would be able to be up there for 21 stages, deliver such a performance and help Chris to take the victory. I’m very proud of that and I hope I can improve on every aspect – Grand Tours, Classics – this season.”

Big victories last year were made all the sweeter as Kwiatkowski bounced back from what was, by his own admission, a disappointing season in 2016. Despite not hitting the heights in his first year as a Team Sky rider, he admitted the team’s belief was instrumental in getting him back to his best, and ultimately signing a new three-year contract.

“The support I had from the team was amazing, and that’s why I was able to win such big races. That’s what I love about this team. They don’t give up on you, I don’t give up on them and that’s why I was able to talk about my future with such a team, which stands behind you when you are in trouble, and are there to support you winning the race. It was just a matter of time that there was going to be a signature on the contract and I’m happy that I can be part of the family for the next three years. We can really think, not just about short-term goals in 2018, but think about how my race calendar could look in the next two to three years. That’s great and it gives me the opportunity to think long-term, which can only make me better.”

VeloVeritas
Here at VeloVeritas, we provide our readers with truthful, accurate, unique and informative articles about the sport we love. We attend many local races as well as work on the professional circuit, from the local "10" mile time trial to the "monuments" - classics like Milan-SanRemo and the Tour of Lombardy, the World Road and Track Championships, the winter Six Days and the Grand Tours; le Tour de France, il Giro d'Italia and la Vuelta a España.

Related Articles

Ian Boswell – “A three year deal with Sky gives me confidence”

Baby Giro winner, Joe Dombrowski is just half the story when it comes to rising US stars joining Team Sky for 2013. Dombrowski’s friend, countryman and Bontrager-Livestrong team mate, Ian Boswell is another young man who’s been busy this year, attracted a lot of attention and will be joining the Team Sky juggernaut.

Ian Boswell – “I don’t want any ‘what ifs?’”

It was the end of 2012 when we last spoke to 23 year-old American Ian Boswell on the eve of his first get together with Team Sky. We caught up with him again in January of this year to see how his professional debut year with double Tour winning squad SKY had gone.

How NOT to Win Friends

Ben Swift - top guy, affable, always happy to chat, looks the business and has a great career ahead of him. But-I don't like what's happening with this Sky business. I might be wrong - and am probably writing my own obituary here, as far as Sky interviews goes - but it smacks to me of; 'we can't get Brad, so we have to get some one else who can win a bit and who's English!'

The VV View: Team Sky’s ‘Marginal Gains’ – Worthwhile, or Simply Hype?

It's great to see cycling breaking mainstream - a double page colour spread in the Times discussing Marginal Gains... it's almost as if the guy that bankrolls the team, owns the newspaper. He does? Oh!

Team Sky Welcomes the Chris Froome Verdict

Team Sky have today welcomed the decision by the UCI to dismiss the case against Chris Froome.

Steve Cummings – the Pro’s Pro

When Steve Cummings rode for Discovery Channel in 2007, he was in the service of Alberto Contador. 'Bert' told the Disco mechanic Allan Butler; "when you ask Cummings to ride on the front-he rides, I'd have him on my team any time!" Praise doesn't come much higher. We caught up with Steve just before he jetted off to the Far East for the new Beijing WorldTour race, to talk Cav, his move from Sky to BMC and-Liverpool FC.

At Random

James Moss – “I’m Much Further On”

In the autumn of 2009 James Moss was still a surveyor and a 'weekend warrior' on the bike-within weeks he was a full time pro with Scotland's Endura team, dueling with the Pro Tour squads in the Tour of the Mediterranean and Tour of Murcia. We thought we'd catch up for a 'Xmas end of term report` on his first Pro season with the 25 year-old from Newcastle.

Dan Patten – ASFRA-Flanders and a Solid Start to the Season

We spoke to Dan Patten a couple of times last year, when he was a member of the Magnus Maximus team. This year, he's off in search of cobbles, riding for a famous name - ASFRA-Flanders, the team started by the late and sadly missed, Frans Assez.

James McCallum – “Commy Games? I Just Want to Forget About Them”

VeloVeritas waited until we were sure that James McCallum was displaying no symptoms of dengue fever before we caught up with him at Starbucks for a chat about his third Commonwealth Games.

Mike Cuming – a Very Young Pro

We all know everything about Armstrong, Contador and the other top names in Pro cycling, but they all had to start somewhere. A young English rider called Mike Cuming has shot from club cyclist to promising Pro in two seasons so nothing is impossible.

Nikolai Razouvaev – World Champion for Russia in the 80’s

How many juniors do you know who train three times every day, clocking up 1,000 kilometres each week? That’s what it took to make Nikolai Razouvaev World Junior Team Time Trial Champion in 1984.

Rudy Pevenage – “They should have sent half of the peloton home”

Rudy Pevenage was the man behind Jan Ulrich and guided him to a Tour de France win and many other successes, but let's not forget he was a top rider in his own Pro career. Not much has been heard of the man from Moerbeke recently, so we looked him up on one of our visits to Belgium for the Omloop...