Esteban Chaves - “It’s exciting and it’s one big dream.”Wed 22 Feb 2017
Two-time Grand Tour podium placer Esteban Chaves will make his debut at this year’s Tour de France and combine with both Adam and Simon Yates in the Vuelta a Espana.
For ORICA-SCOTT it has been the part of the long term plan in developing Chaves, and finally the Colombian will step up to ride his first Tour de France, which he sees as a dream and an important step in his career.
“Sometimes I can’t believe this. It’s beautiful and for me just to be part of the start line is one victory,” explained the 27-year-old.
“It’s exciting to try for the first time to arrive to Paris with this team. It’s exciting and it’s one big dream.
“When I was 12 or 13 years old, I was on the couch with my father watching the Tour de France and this was the first moment I dreamt of this, and now I will start.”
Having established himself as a top contender in three-week grand tours, having finished second in the Giro d’Italia and third in the Vuelta a Espana in 2016, Chaves understands the prestige and importance of the Tour de France but aims to approach it like any other race.
“Everyone says the Tour de France is a really different race, that it’s a lot of pressure and it’s super big, but I want to believe it is just one bicycle race and try to enjoy how much more is possible for me to achieve,” Chaves explained.
“I am most excited about the thought of arriving in Paris. This is the picture I have in my mind.”
ORICA-SCOTT believe the parcours for the 2017 Tour de France will compliment Chaves’ strengths and sport director Matt White believes that ‘Esteban has proven that he is ready, and deserves this opportunity’.
“I think we chose this year the Tour de France because the time trials aren’t really long. It’s true, there’s not a lot of big mountain days but there is enough,” said Chaves. “The final climbs are hard and steep like the Vuelta a Espana so if I can find the performance from that race, it’s not bad for me.”
“The Giro and Vuelta is proof I can do really well and I can stay with the best riders in the world.”