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Philippe Gilbert: Unlike Chris Froome, Tadej Pogačar has panache

Our top 10 stories of the week…and it’s a lot of Tadej Pogačar (but not all!)

Phillipe Gilbert is a fan of Tadej Pogačar and believes he will be untouchable at the Giro d’Italia. He also thinks that the way the Slovenian races is far better than some of the other Grand Tour winners.

“It’s not like the era of Chris Froome, there was no panache, it was not nice to see those years. But today, when you see Pogačar racing, it’s another level, you know, it’s really spectacular,” the Belgian said. “It’s almost like bringing cycling back to the sixties and seventies, when Eddy Merckx, when all those guys went a long way from the finish and won with two, three, four minutes. We’re almost back in this time of cycling, you know.”

He also thinks that only a crash or sickness will keep Pogi from dominating the Corsa Rosa.

“I think it’s logical to say that he’s going to win. It’s still a long way, three weeks of racing is still a long way– we saw it in the past that anything can happen,” he added. “You can be sick, you can crash… but apart from that I don’t see him losing for any physical reasons. Tactically he is also quite smart, he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes.”

His main rival, Geraint Thomas, knows that Pog is the man to beat, but anything can happen.

“Obviously Pogačar is the pre-race favourite and has a strong team around him, and that changes the dynamic of the race a bit,” Thomas said. “But that also means all eyes will be on him over three long weeks of hard racing. Our plan is to be aggressive. To take the race on and look for every opportunity to add pressure and take time.”

As far as his strategy, Gilbert thinks he will pick the best ones to get his gaps, then protect the lead.

“I think he will use the time trials to gain time, and try to win stages. But I think if I was him I would go full on the first chance, and from this moment just try to protect,” Gilbert said.

You can watch the Giro d’Italia, which starts Saturday in Turin, on

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