NICE, France (VN) — The dust had barely settled on Andrew Talansky’s breakout Paris-Nice performance when he shifted his sights toward his next goals.
His stage victory, second place overall and best young rider prize at the “Race to the Sun” only bolsters Talansky’s self-confidence moving into the meat of the season.
“Winning a stage at Paris-Nice is a whole other level,” Talansky told VeloNews. “It’s been an incredible week. It’s a great way to start the season this way. You get positive momentum and it keeps going from there. I exceeded my own expectations.”
Up next are Critérium International, the Vuelta al País Vasco and the Tour de Romandie.
It’s the latter that Talansky wants to sink his teeth into.
“I want to go to try to win,” Talansky said. “That’s the next big goal. Romandie holds a special place in my heart due to the last two years there.”
It was on the roads of the weeklong Swiss tour that Talansky first started to taste success in Europe.
In his rookie 2011 season, he was fifth in the time trial and ninth overall. Last year, he was second overall to Bradley Wiggins (Sky) and was second in the time trial by just 0.7 second to the Brit, who went on to win the Tour de France.
“Last year’s Romandie was a bit of a surprise,” Talansky said. “This year I want to go back to win.”
The two-day Critérium International is harder to predict, and the Basque Country’s endless series of short, steep climbs are not his preferred terrain.
“Basque Country is a goal, but it’s a very difficult race. It’s not my style, due to the punchy nature of the roads,” Talansky said. “We’ll see how Basque Country goes.
“Two years ago, I came here [Paris-Nice] and suffered like a dog. I was on my knees and now I am second. We’ll see if that same progression continues at Basque Country.”
The ultimate goal is to peak for his first crack at the Tour de France in July.