• BMC's Rohan Dennis will aim to take his opportunities at the 2017 Vuelta a España. (Getty)Source: Getty
Rohan Dennis is determined not to let pedigree become complacency as he takes aim at the first leader's jersey of the Vuelta a España tonight.
By
Sophie Smith

Source:
Cycling Central
19 Aug 2017 - 1:57 PM  UPDATED 20 Aug 2017 - 5:58 AM

BMC Racing as two-time trade world champions is a favourite for the opening team time trial in Nimes, France and Dennis could realistically lead it over the finish line.

The 27-year-old achieved a similar feat at the 2015 Tour de France Grand Depart in Utrecht, Netherlands winning the individual time trial to take the first maillot jaune of that Grand Tour.

"The absolute perfect scenario for me at this Vuelta would be the opening TTT win and wearing the leader's jersey, winning a road stage either in Andorra or in the final week and the stage 16 TT," Dennis told Cycling Central from Nimes.

"We can't be complacent though and expect that we will win. Once we have that attitude the chance of winning drops dramatically.

"I've been feeling good at training and everything has been going pretty smoothly for myself. Only time will tell how that form relates to racing but I'm confident in my ability to get a result or two."

BMC made a late substitution at the Vuelta after Samuel Sanchez, 39, was provisionally suspended earlier this week having tested positive for growth hormone-releasing peptide GHRP-2 in an 9 August out-of-competition test.

Dennis took a hard line against the billed Spaniard, reported to be on the verge of retirement, on Friday and was as clear in his resolve on the matter as he was the race, stating his opinion as "simply not happy at all".

"If his B sample comes back negative, or there is a serious medical reason regarding his health, which caused the high reading, then I will support and back him 100 per cent," Dennis said.

"If he has no medical proof as to why his levels are naturally high and his B sample is positive then he has no place in cycling and I have absolutely no respect for him and his actions."

SBS will broadcast and live stream all stages of the Vuelta a España live from 19 August to 10 September.

The Australian national time trial champion, who is based in Andorra, Spain, will line-up alongside American teammate Tejay van Garderen and Irishman Nicolas Roche, but each are set to have more of a free role at the Vuelta with no outright leader declared this year.

Dennis has proven himself especially in the race against the clock through 2017. He was part of the BMC squad that claimed the TTT at Tirreno-Adriatico and Volta a Catalunya. He also won the individual time trial at Tirreno and both the prologue and individual time trial at the Tour de Suisse in June.

"I haven't done any specific recon for the race. I know the finish of the Andorra stage very well and also the opening TTT, but only because we are here before the race," he said.

"Personally, I would like to see how my legs feel in Andorra and both time trials. I would also like to test myself in the third week, or at least in the second half with a road stage win but I am not sure which one."