Jens Voigt: “Okay, I’ve got to at least entertain the crowd”
The season is underway. And Jens Voigt is on the attack. It’s a familiar sight. And one that attracts people to cycling. He was a star of the show on the opening night of the Tour Down Under festival on the streets of Adelaide. The showman was entertaining because that’s what he felt he owed it to an appreciative crowd. Together with Zak Dempster, he led the People’s Choice Classic – a title for a criterium based on the acquisition of a credit union for a sponsor of the prelude race for the first WorldTour event of 2013. His odds for that chance of winning were small but the likelihood of him attacking early at a time when cycling needs to be entertaining was high.
Here is some of what the oldest rider in the WorldTour peloton had to say after the race…
“Elvis of the breakaways…” – Jens Voigt
20 January 2013
“Sometimes I have a self-belief beyond reason.”
Jens Voigt was on the attack in the first few hundred metres. He joined Zak Dempster on the attack and gained over a minute of advantage on the peloton only to be caught with eight laps to go.
“I’ve been in the business for some years. You know it’s very, very – 99 per cent… not going to work.
“I [won a crit] once, but that was as an amateur, we did lap the field once and then I went alone to lap them again…
“That was, hang on, that was back in the last ice-age – we still had the mammoths running around. So, you know that was quite some years back…
“I wouldn’t [this season] is definitely my last. It’s not getting easier and I hate to be the person to admit, but I’m not getting any younger and so we’ll see how it goes. I want to have a good last season, and I would really not like to hear, ‘Oh,’ look at him – that’s Jens, he was a good rider before but he really missed his… he missed the point to stop…’ so I don’t want to hear that.
“I’ll take it year by year.”
…”[The crit] was a chance to stretch the legs a little bit. See how it goes and get ready for next week to do some work on the front for the boys.”
RIDE: We saw you coming out of the first corner and you were already having a laugh was it part of a joke with José [Azevedo]?
“No, but I did joke with a few of the boys. If you want to make some money, go to one of these betting sites and make a bet – I know how will make the first attack this year.
“I’m probably well known for being silly. I will never learn. I will never get smart. I will learn to pace myself and to be smart. I also figured I actually DID get a nice applause yesterday from the crowd at the team presentation, so I said, ‘Okay, at least I’ve got to entertain the crowd. I mean, sometimes they call me the Elvis of the breakaways and I’ve worked many years for this title so I’ve got to confirm that I’m still there if it comes to breakaways.”
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