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´Fresh´ Froome ready for Bergen time-trial challenge

19 September 2017 15:43

Chris Froome is feeling "fresh" despite his gruelling efforts at the Vuelta a Espana and the Briton believes Sunday's World Championships time trial could yield a surprise result.

Having followed up his Tour de France triumph with victory in Spain, Froome is riding the crest of a wave and those exertions have not dampened his enthusiasm for what he feels will be a tough test in Bergen.

"Obviously, with the last few months with the Tour de France and the Vuelta, it's not something I've necessarily been able to train specifically for," he told BBC Sport ahead of the weekend's time trial in Norway.

"I'm here with whatever form I've got on the back of the Tour and the Vuelta. I still feel good, still feel fresh, feel up for it, so I'm going to get on that start line and just give it everything I've got.

"I know I'm up against time-trial specialists who have focused specifically on being ready for this, who didn't race the Vuelta a Espana, so that makes it quite challenging.

"But at the same time I'd rather be here and give it my best than be at home and wonder where I would have finished.

"I'm certainly not banking on a result. Anything would be a bonus from here."

Froome believes the course, which climaxes with a 3.4-kilometre climb up Mount Floyen that averages a 9.1 per cent gradient, opens up the possibility for a shock winner.

"It's a pretty brutal course," he said. "Only 31 kilometres, but we finish up this wall of a climb.

"It's not a standard time trial by any means and I think a lot of the pure time trialists will think, 'how do I tackle that?'.

"It's an interesting one. The organisers here have certainly shaken things up and we could get a bit of a surprise result on Sunday."

The 32-year-old has never been crowned world time-trial champion, with Bradley Wiggins the last Briton to triumph back in 2014.

Tony Martin won his fourth gold medal in Qatar last year, although the German is not banking on a fifth due to one of the factors Froome alluded to.

"The finale of the course of the individual time trial is way too hard for me," he said, as quoted by cyclingnews.com. "I'll be the outgoing world champion and so I'll still give it everything and I'll fight hard but I know I've got very little chance of success." 

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