Ultimate 12 months was once the most efficient ever within the profession of Annemiek van Vleuten, with wins at Strade Bianche, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the Giro Rosa and her first street race identify on the International Championships. Procycling mag’s 2020 season preview options an unique interview with the Dutchwoman, in addition to a 66-page booklet that appears forward to the brand new racing 12 months. 

Although she has two times received the arena time trial identify, 2020 is the primary time Van Vleuten will put on the rainbow stripes at the street, together with her victory in Yorkshire coming a 12 months after a crash and next knee damage completed her 2018 season. Procycling met with Van Vleuten close to her house within the Netherlands after which joined her for a trip round her house roads, the place she appeared again at the 100-kilometre assault that received her the Worlds, and why she thinks she will nonetheless stay making improvements to. 

“In step with Louis [Delahaije, coach], we haven’t hit the ceiling but; yearly I nonetheless get a little higher,” Van Vleuten says. “Throughout the climb on the Worlds the place I attacked, I recorded my best possible ever five-minute energy. It’s fairly great when you’ll be able to pull that off at 36.”

Any other rider taking a look against the years he has left in his profession is Alexander Kristoff. The Norwegian, 32, has trodden the road between sprinter and classics specialist during his profession however, as he will get older, he’s reflecting extra on the place his strengths lie and the place he suits into the peloton. Edward Pickering went to satisfy the UAE Emirates rider to determine why he’s maximum a success on the finish of the races when everybody else is struggling. 

A brand new season manner new-look groups within the peloton, in all probability none extra so than French ProTeam squad Arkea-Samsic, who appearance reworked this 12 months due to a raft of primary signings. None come larger than Nairo Quintana, who strikes down a degree after spending his profession up to now at Movistar. The Colombian heads a South American trio who transfer to the historically French group, together with house sprinter Nacer Bouhanni, who’s taking a look to get his profession again not off course after a disappointing few seasons at Cofidis. Alasdair Fotheringham frolicked with the group to determine if their large ambitions are life like or an excessive amount of, too speedy.

Thomas, Center East, Olympics, and Ketones

Initially of this 12 months, Crew Ineos showed that Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal will each go back to the Excursion de France this July. Welshman Thomas received the race in 2018 and completed runner-up to his teammate Bernal remaining summer time and, although he’ll be 34 when the Excursion begins in Great, he feels he has unfinished industry with the race. Sophie Hurcom interviewed Thomas about why the Excursion issues such a lot to him. 

Regardless of the Excursion of Oman’s contemporary cancellation for 2020, the Center East races had been part of professional biking’s panorama for 18 years, with the UAE Excursion, a brand new ladies’s Dubai Excursion and Saudi Excursion all at the early season calendar. Edward Pickering seems at the place the desolate tract races are compatible into the game. 

In different places, Jon Dibben has pressed the reset button on his WorldTour profession this 12 months, becoming a member of Lotto Soudal after a 12 months clear of the highest degree of the game. As soon as hailed as one in all Britain’s brightest younger riders, with an international identify at the observe and primary U23 street performances to his identify, Dibben grew to become professional with Sky in 2017 however after two seasons discovered himself in biking no-man’s land. He tells Procycling why he’s satisfied to be beginning once more on the Belgian group.

The 2020 Olympics in Japan will mark 30 years for the reason that International Championships had been additionally held within the nation. Giles Belbin meets Frenchwoman Catherine Marsal, the gold medallist on the ladies’s street race again in 1990, to recall her speedy upward push thru biking, her career-defining victory and the drive she confronted afterwards. 

Plus, James Witts explores the reality at the back of the headlines on ketones, the debatable complement that’s been rumoured to had been used within the peloton for years, whilst William Fotheringham takes us again to the times of Castorama within the 1990s on this month’s Unfashionable function. 

The February factor additionally options all our regulars, plus introduces our new diarists for 2020 – James Knox, Heidi Franz and Roger Kluge – whilst Dan Martin additionally returns. On most sensible of that, Procycling additionally has a brand new common contributor in Laurens ten Dam, who might be writing our new Ultimate Phrase column each and every month. 

Procycling mag: the most efficient writing and pictures from throughout the global’s hardest game. Select up your replica in all excellent newsagents and supermarkets now, or select up a Procycling subscription.

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