• Esteban Chaves will bring his climbing talents to Australia in 2017. (Getty)Source: Getty
Colombian Esteban Chaves will begin his 2017 season in Australia starting at the Santos Tour Down Under before tackling the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and Jayco Herald Sun Tour.
By
Cycling Central

23 Nov 2016 - 9:33 PM  UPDATED 24 Nov 2016 - 1:07 PM

Chaves, who races for Australian team Orica-BikeExchange, is on a trajectory that will take him to the Giro d’Italia where this year he finished second overall.

The 26-year-old will hope to go one better in 2017 and the Australian events will play an important part in his early season preparation

The three-week Italian race will begin on 5 May in Sardinia ends in Milan on 28 May.

“This year we set some big goals and we meet and pass them many times, especially with the Giro d'Italia, Vuelta a Espana and Il Lombardia. Sometimes I don't believe all of this happened,” Chaves said.

“Next year, we will start a little different in Australia but we will again set some big goals for hope this success again.”

Chaves chooses Giro over Tour in 2017
After surveying the course profiles of the 2017 Giro d'Italia and Tour de France Orica-BikeExchange Colombian star Esteban Chaves has opted to again race the former.

Chaves said he was excited to ride in Australia where he has amassed a huge fan base as a result of his dynamic racing style and engaging personality.

“I want to see every single fan that supports me, but I want to see them properly, so we chose to start the season in the Australian summer for this reason,” he said.

“When I go to one new place I like to see how the local people live, what the local people eat, what the local people do, the culture and mentality.

“I am super excited to look at all these different things, understand Australians even more and learn why Australians are super nice persons with everyone.”

Chaves extends with Orica-BikeExchange
Colombian Esteban Chaves has added another year to his contract with Orica-Bike Exchange, making him a fixture with the Australian outfit through to the end of 2019.

With the early season start to 2017, Chaves remains unsure of how competitive he will be, telling the Herald Sun that he will at least enjoy the experience.

“This is a hard question to answer. It’s the first time I’m going to be racing in Australia and I want to try to give the best performance I can,” he said.

“If the results come it’s more than welcome but more important is enjoyment. Enjoying the race and enjoying Australia and if there’s an opportunity where I can choose to go super hard, I will.

“I am 100 per cent motivated, which is so important. The body follows the mind and if the mind is good then everything else comes together.”