Sagan hits back at Bora team manager ahead of Tour of Flanders

Star Slovakian sprinter Peter Sagan has hit back at his BORA-Hansgrohe team boss saying he is more than happy to find a new team if he is unwanted at the German outfit.

100th Volta Ciclista a Catalunya 2021 - Stage 6

Peter Sagan of German team Bora-Hansgrohe Source: Velo

The Tour of Flanders sees the cycling world turn its collective eyes towards Belgium for a virtual pilgrimage to the 'hellingen' - the cobbles of the Flanders region - for the 105th edition of the men's monument, the 18th for the women. Australian viewers will be able to watch all the racing action on SBS VICELAND and SBS On Demand.

Sagan’s comments come after BORA-Hansgrohe team manager Ralph Denk said in an interview that it might be time to move on from Sagan as age and injury begin to mount up for the seven-time Tour de France Green Jersey winner.

Sagan, who will be looking to win his second Tour of Flanders when he takes to the start line at De Ronde on Sunday night (AEST), has had a tough start to the season after contracting COVID-19 in February which forced him off the bike for three weeks.

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After falling sick during preseason training, it has been a slow return to form for the 31-year-old but he is adamant he still has plenty to offer and is not at the back-end of his career.



In an interview with Cyclingnews, Sagan said if Denk does not want to offer him a new deal at BORA-Hansgrohe he is more than happy to go and find a team that does.

"I’ve been busy racing so I haven’t yet sat down to talk with Ralph, so my future has still to be decided,” Sagan said.

“I honestly don’t feel old. I’m 31, I don’t feel in the autumn of my career and I think I’ve shown I can still win races even if my spring has been hampered by the COVID-19 virus.

“I’ve had some great years at Bora-Hansgrohe but if Ralph sees me as past my best then that’s his opinion. If he thinks he doesn’t need me to win races for the team, I’ll be the first person to try to find a team that really wants me.

2021 is Sagan's 12th season at WorldTour level in a career that has included 114 individual race wins, three world titles, seven Tour de France green points jerseys, three editions of Gent-Wevelgem as well as victory at Flanders and the 2018 edition of Paris-Roubaix.

Arguably still one of the biggest stars in the WorldTour peloton, Sagan is determined to prove this season he remains in the upper echelon of professional riders.

While his preseason training program was ruined by COVID-19, Sagan took part in the Tirreno-Adriatico and the Volta a Catalunya.

At the Volta, he took out stage six with a vintage sprint finish which was his first bunch sprint stage win since 2019.



Sagan says he is feeling good ahead of the Tour of Flanders despite his struggles this year.

“I feel good but I’m not quite at my best. I was off the bike for three weeks,” he said.

“I’ve done all I could to be back to my best but I’m riding Flanders without any Classics racing, so it’s difficult to understand how I’ll do.

“The Ronde always shows who is the best and strongest on the day, there’s no getting away from that.”


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3 min read
Published 4 April 2021 at 2:47pm
Source: SBS