Evenepoel says decision on Giro d’Italia or Tour de France 2023 ‘already made’
Remco Evenepoel (QuickStep-AlphaVinyl) has already decided whether he will race the Giro d’Italia or the Tour de France in 2023 but will not reveal his Grand Tour choice until the new year.
“I made my decision,” Evenepoel said. Het Nieuwsblad, “but the decision will not be announced until next January. I can only say that I am happy with my racing programme, calm at the start but more and more intense. The opposite of this year, in some ways.
Evenepoel was speaking after being voted Flandrien of the Year, another top Belgian cycling award after the crystal fiets prize he won last week. Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) won the same prize in both awards, winning the equivalent prize in the women’s category after winning the Kristallen Fiets.
This is the first time that Evenepoel has received the Flandrien of the Year award, which he won ahead of Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) and Arnaud De Lie (Lotto Soudal).
Evenepoel has hinted that he will take part in the Giro d’Italia and the Corsa Rosa 2023 includes 70.6 km of time trials. However, he is also hungry to face his Grand Tour rivals in France and press team sposo Soudal is eager to see him in the sport’s biggest race next July.
Evenepoel had said earlier this year that his only regret in terms of racing about 2022 was not competing in Milano-San Remo, but he told Het Nieuwsblad that it had not yet been decided whether the Italian monument would be part of its 2023 racing program.
“It’s still not clear what the weekend is,” he said, “but it would be nice if I could be a part of it.”
After racing a total of 68 days in 2022, Evenepoel stressed that he will prioritize quality over quantity in 2023.
Evenepoel also provided some additional emotions and thoughts on his incredible 2022 campaign, saying that “from a purely physical point of view, my solo attack in San Sebastian was the most powerful”.
He won the Basque Classic for the second time in his career with a 45 kilometer solo breakaway.
“What really surprised me was how I was able to maintain my best form from late July to late September,” he explained.
“In all this time, I’ve only had one bad day, [on stage 14 of the Vuelta when he all but cracked on the ascent of the Pandera – Ed.] and that was after an accident.
Evenepoel said he and the team learned from their mistakes in the Tour de Suisse.
“The lesson for Vuelta a España was to prepare much more specifically and to be much fresher at the start,” he said.
“It worked very well at the time. The plan now is to copy this preparation for every Grand Tour.”
asked if by Het Nieuwsblad whether he needed an enemy – real or imagined – to bring out the best in him, as recently turned out to be the case for former professional basketball player Michael Jordan during his career, Evenepoel said that found his own motivation.
“I get my motivation from concrete goals, not from the image of an enemy. I think cycling doesn’t seem like the right sport to think in those terms.”
“The cycling peloton is a small environment in which you constantly meet. Better to make as many friends as possible and as few enemies as possible.”