If confidence and trust are a crucial ingredient of a sprinter’s success, Caleb Ewan appears to have landed in just the right place. Jayco-AlUla Director of Racing Matt White believes Ewan can return to his very best with the Australian team.
The characterisation of Ewan’s 2023 Tour de France by his current team Lotto-Dstny and Jayco-AlUla is a study of contrasts. After Ewan left the tough mountainous edition of the race on stage 13, the Belgian team delivered a very public and blunt spray of criticism. However Jayco-AlUla were quick to cite the Tour de France as a positive indicator of where Ewan fits in the world of sprinters.
“He is still around the mark there, he hasn’t had the most successful of years but at the Tour de France he showed he is still very competitive, he is not old, and sprinting is about confidence,” White told Wielerflits.
“Confidence about the people in your corner, confidence about the group you have around you.”
Ewan once found had confidence in the Belgian team, taking ten victories in his opening year. They included two stages at the Giro d’Italia and three at his debut Tour de France.
However CEO Stéphane Heulot made no secret of his desire for Ewan to move on after 2023, reiterating in the release announcing the rider’s departure that: “We all know he has a lot of talent, but right now he is not showing that in our team and then it’s better to part ways.”
The 29-year-old from Sydney may have only claimed one victory in 2023, but has 60 career victories, with nearly half of those coming from his time at the Australian squad where he started his career.
They have welcomed him back with high hopes.
“We have a big history with Caleb, [he was] in our development team, turned professional with us,” White explained.
“He has had a lot of success with us and we are looking to turn back the clock and get him back on the top of the podium.”
Ewan highlighted the benefit of switching back to an Australian team and Jayco-AlUla certainly played heavily into the theme of the returning local hero with their welcome back video.
𝙏𝙃𝙀 𝙉𝙀𝙒𝙎 𝙄𝙎 𝙊𝙐𝙏…𝙏𝙀𝘼𝙈 𝙅𝘼𝙔𝘾𝙊 𝘼𝙇𝙐𝙇𝘼 𝘿𝙊𝙀𝙎 𝙄𝙏 𝘾𝙍𝙊𝘾𝙊𝘿𝙄𝙇𝙀 𝘿𝙐𝙉𝘿𝙀𝙀 𝙎𝙏𝙔𝙇𝙀 😂 The one and only Caleb Ewan returns to his roots, returning home in 2024 🇦🇺 🦘🎉 Bring it on 🦘🎉🇦🇺 pic.twitter.com/BvpnEaCTIcOctober 11, 2023