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Robbie McEwen: “I waited for this my entire career”

May 17, 2012

Robbie McEwen with his first coach, Bob Panter, at the Amgen Tour of California

Robbie McEwen announced he plans to retire from racing after the Amgen Tour of California. He gave a press conference prior to the AToC time trial today in Bakersfield and addressed questions with, unsurprisingly, very quotable responses.

What’s is like for you as a sprinter, going over the mountains? Robbie: “The mountains have been a nightmare. The GC guys say they have it hard because they have to pay attention all the time. Sprinters say that’s bullshit. The GC guys can go through transition stages easy, but a sprinter races every day.” When it’s a sprint finish day, sprinters are exhausted at the end of the day. And then in the mountains, they are fighting just to stay in the race.

When asked about the Orica-GreenEDGE project, Robbie said, “Guys like myself and Stuey O’Grady have been waiting for this all of our careers. I’m grateful to enjoy even half a season of it.”

When asked to sum up his twenty plus career, Robbie said, “It’s been fun. Cycling started as a hobby.”

Robbie will work for Orica-GreenEDGE this season in a coaching role. He said he’s very analytical about races — he studies the route, the finish maps, and develops a plan of how to attack it. Having information about the course is critical. It’s how HTC won a stage with Cavendish at a race when there was a left-hander with 500 meters to go. “HTC had all the information,” he said. Robbie couldn’t see around the corner and he backed off a tad. That cost him three-quarters of a bike length and the race. “The sprint was already ridden at 500 meters to go,” he said.

On what he’s looking forward to doing: “Just being there in the morning for the kids, being at birthday parties, sports day. I plan to go on my first skiing holiday.” Robbie said he’s had contracts that require him not to practice certain sports, like motocross and skiing.

From → Road Racing

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