O'Connor: "I really enjoyed"

The Australian, second overall, assured that being on the Tour was already "a dream come true" and that he will try to hold onto positions of honor.


Ben O'Connor, winner at Tignes, debuted his record in the Tour, the race in which he made his debut in this edition, and in the Ag2r, team for which he signed for this year: “I enjoyed a lot and returned the trust those who bet on me ”. And what does an Australian do in a French squad? “I ask myself sometimes, because I don't speak the language very well, nor do my colleagues and technicians speak English. However, I have found the ideal place to grow as a runner. ”

Professional since 2015, he belonged to his country's Navitas and Avanti (2016) before joining Dimension Data in 2017. In the 2018 Giro he exploited his climbing qualities and roamed the top-ten until a fall and a broken collarbone ended with his aspirations: “You learn more from blows than from successes. After that good moment it was difficult for me to return to my level, until 2020 ”. In last year's Corsa Rosa he won in Madonna di Campiglio, his first victory in a big one: “The first success is not forgotten, but winning on the Tour is like scoring a goal in the World Cup, the dream of all young children who want to dedicate themselves to their sports ”.

At 25, he only needs one target in the Vuelta to close the collection ... and thanks to the masterpiece on the run on the second alpine day he placed second overall, at 2:01 behind the yellow jersey and with 3:17 ahead of third-placed Rigoberto Urán. “I know I don't look like Geraint Thomas, Primoz Roglic or Tadej Pogacar, although I have room for improvement in time trials and a good ability to climb ports. Once located in the positions of honor, to see if I can resist until Paris. I wanted to emulate Cadel Evans from 2011 (the first Australian to win the Tour), so I hope the country is proud of me too. ”

Photos from as.com
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