Video: Dan Martin on what he has to do to beat Alejandro Valverde
Dan Martin took a good result today, but he looked in bad form speaking to the media.
Ireland’s Dan Martin has said he may never win La Flèche Wallonne in a head-to-head with Alejandro Valverde.
The Spaniard made it look easy at the end of 200km today.
He marked the surges off the front of the select group on the Mur de Huy. And then when he felt the time was right he kicked for home to win.
Martin, on the other hand, started the hardest part of the climb very far back. He was at the rear of the group that formed off the front when the road went up.
And by the time the final surge for the line began he had a huge amount of ground to make up on Valverde.
“Maybe I got to wait until Alejandro retires to win the Flèche Wallonne,” the Irish rider said at the finish.
“Obviously I hope I can beat him one day. It was a strange race today, with a strong headwind. The speed wasn’t so high in the peloton.
“All the climbs in last 60 kilometres made for a very nervous race as there were still a lot of riders fresh with 50 kilometres to go.
“I stayed calm, I knew it was possible to come back with the headwind but I couldn’t take Alejandro’s wheel.
“He has this explosiveness that is difficult to match. We wanted to make the race harder and then have Bob (Jungels) attack.
“I’m happy with my second place to a rider like Alejandro. It still hurts to get a third podium and still no victory.”
Many Irish fans will be hoping he starts the final ascent of the Mur de Huy much further forward than he has to date.
Highlights from Dan Martin’s 2nd place