Sivakov ready for third week

27 May 2019

Sivakov ready for third week

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Pavel Sivakov is enjoying being one of the breakthrough stars of the Giro d’Italia as he prepares for the third and final week.

The 21 year old sits ninth overall after 15 stages, holding the prestigious white young rider’s jersey in what is only his second Grand Tour. 
 
Climbing with elite company at such a young age, Sivakov is taking it all in his stride.
 
Speaking to TeamINEOS.com on the second rest day he said: “It feels good. When I came into the race I didn’t expect to be in this position heading into the last week. It’s good for me and I hope to maintain this performance, and why not try to do even better.
Pavel Sivakov

Pavel Sivakov

It feels a bit weird to see myself up there, but when I’m racing you’re just there in your own bubble, doing your own thing.
“If you look at the top 10, the guys up there are all established riders who have done top 10s in Grand Tours before. So it’s a bit of a surprise for me and I think for everybody a little bit. It feels a bit weird to see myself up there, but when I’m racing you’re just there in your own bubble, doing your own thing. In that sense it’s normal and you just make the best of it.”
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Born in the Veneto region close to Venice, Italy has always been a happy hunting ground for Sivakov, who enjoyed success in the under-23 ranks, before claiming his first pro victory in April at the Tour of the Alps.
 
He added: “I like to race in Italy and I’ve always had some success here in the under-23 years – winning (Giro della Valle) d’ Aosta and the Baby Giro. Now I’m in the white jersey at the Giro – it’s amazing! It’s going to be hard to keep it – we saw (Miguel Angel) Lopez took some time yesterday – but I’ll fight until the end.” 
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The battle for position is made all the more difficult for Sivakov as he heads into the uncharted territory of a third week in a stage race. His Grand Tour debut was cut short at the 2018 Vuelta a Espana after injuries from a crash caught up with him, just shy of the second rest day.
 
On his first foray into a third week, Sivakov admitted: “It’s a new thing for me so I’m going into the unknown a bit. We’ll see how it goes but it’s a nice thing for me. I just hope to keep having the same legs and maybe improve even. It’s always possible that some guys will crack. You just have to hope that it’s not you.
 
“Yesterday I didn’t feel too good and I was really happy to arrive at the rest day. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow. That’s one of the biggest tests of the entire race. We’ll see who is up there and who isn’t. It’s going to be interesting for sure.” 
Pavel Sivakov

Pavel Sivakov

It’s a new thing for me so I’m going into the unknown a bit.
There’s no let-up in the final six stages, with Tuesday’s test featuring yet more high mountains, including the fearsome Passo del Mortirolo. The racing will go right down to the final kilometre this year, with a final-day time trial set to decide the race in Verona.
 
“The stages in the final week should suit me pretty well. That said, Mortirolo is going to be really tough tomorrow, especially for a big guy like me, but I’m going to do my best. I’ve had a look at the TT and I think it could be a good course for me. But it’s the last week so a lot of it is about the legs. It’s hard to know when you don’t have the experience and you are discovering something new.”
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