Dan Martin - keeping it in perspective
Team Garmin-Sharp's Daniel Martin is a man of many talents.
in a huge base between Torrenio and Catalunya and now I’m recovering to be fresh rather than recovering from a crash (Martin crashed in Tour of the Basque Country and abandoned), and that’s going to pay dividends. I can do some specific training for the Ardennes – some explosive work.”
With a team rich in talent in both stage races and the one-day classics, is there any concern there might be too many chiefs, not enough indians?
“I don’t see that. I couldn’t have won Catalunya without him being there (Ryder Hesjedal). I don’t see it hampering my performance or results.”
“When responsibility falls on our shoulders it’s nice to have teammates around. I know in Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Ryder and I rode incredibly well together and it was great to be able to play off each other. He would attack and I would sit back and watch, and he gets caught and I would counter. It makes racing a whole lot more fun when you have guys with the same jersey around.”
“I know if I’m not on the best day I’ve got one or two guys on the team that we can fall back on. That happened in Catalunya with Peter Stetina on stage 3 (Stetina finished 6th place on the stage).”
Following the Ardennes he’ll have a break from racing for the biggest race on the calendar – the Tour de France. Has he started a list of possible contenders for the podium?
“I honestly haven’t even thought about it,” said Martin. “Maybe it’s my way to stay focused and level headed, but I see it as another race.”
“The Tour is so far away I struggle to understand the sport’s focus (on the Tour de France) and this is after competing in the race. Maybe I’m the only guy in the sport that doesn’t understand the whole focus the sport has on one race in July in France.”
Reflecting further Martin does recognize the importance of the Tour and how it affects the riders.
“I do admit the race is different – there is so much media attention, so much stress, all the best riders in the world are at their best in one place. It’s an incredible environment to race in and I enjoyed it immensely last year, but once you get past kilometer zero it’s just another race.”
“The media has created this aura around the Tour. The media presence and it is the most publicized race in the world which creates a pressure in the peloton and that’s why it’s an important race. This is essentially an entertainment sport – we’re paid to publicize our sponsors. It’s a viscous circle – the more publicity the race gets the more the teams want to do well in the race, and then the pressure. I think there’s more beautiful races that miss the media attention than this phenomenon called the Tour de France.”
“For me I’m too concentrated on this part of the season. I’ll focus on the Tour a couple weeks before.”
While he’s tipped