On Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Tadej Pogacar “does not think of losing a second”

Almost at the same time, Mathieu Van der Poel and Tadej Pogacar appeared in front of the microphones on Friday, each in their hotel in the Liège countryside. But the two protagonists expected on the Doyenne on Sunday were unable to cross paths during the reconnaissance: the Dutchman skipped it, preferring to stay sheltered and “recharge the batteries”, he who lacked legs at the Amstel last Sunday (22nd).

Pogacar, on the contrary, would not have missed it. “I always like this recce, I don’t know why,” explained the Slovenian, who tested himself by attacking 300 meters from the top of the Redoute. It’s like a tradition, so no exceptions. Everyone was there, pressed hard so we didn’t feel cold. »

“This is the Monument that I prefer”

Winner in 2021, the big favorite repeated his love of Liège-Bastogne-Liège, his only outing between the Tour of Catalonia (finished on March 24) and the Giro (start on May 4). “It’s the Monument that I prefer, the first one I ran (18th in 2019) and I told myself that I wanted to win it. » And if the events “were not in [sa] favor these last two years” (absent in 2022 due to a family tragedy, fall and abandonment in 2023), for tomorrow, his mind is clear: “I don’t think there’s a second to lose. »

Especially since his number 1 rival, Remco Evenepoel, will be absent (broken collarbone and shoulder blade). “I’m going to miss him, I was hoping to get face to face with him,” whispered Pogacar. Fortunately, there will be Van der Poel. “I can’t wait to race against him again. When I win against the very best, I am even more satisfied. »


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