Evans eyes future after Tour of discontent

PAUILLAC: Cadel Evans can laugh about it now. After a Tour de France campaign defined by misfortune and injury, the world champion is certain both he and his BMC Racing Team will return next year better for the experience.”It’s not just about this year and building up a team for [next] year’s Tour or the Tour in 2012 or whenever,” Evans said. ”It takes a long time.”Every step of the way here we learn something, we improve things … especially this year, it’s been a real learning experience.”Evans was speaking barely 15 minutes after crossing the finish line of stage 19, a 52-kilometre time trial from Bordeaux to Pauillac, and was still clearly in pain after almost two weeks nursing a fractured elbow sustained in a crash in stage eight. He didn’t need to see an official result sheet to know where his performance on Saturday ranked. ”That was one of the worst time trials of my life. My body is exhausted,” he said.Evans had finished 10 minutes 57 seconds off the pace of stage winner Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) and in 166th place from 170 finishers.The 33-year-old Victorian was spot on with his assessment, even though it still left him best placed Australian overall in 26th at 50:27 to Spaniard Alberto Contador (Astana) before the final and 20th stage from Longjumeau to the Champs Elysees in Paris on Sunday.Evans was justifiably disappointed to fall short – again – of the potential he and many others believe he has in the Tour. But his capacity to continue on in this year’s race and maintain a sense of humour indicates a sense of inner calm – something that will be needed if he is to ever win the race. Soon after recovering in his team bus on Saturday, Evans was able to look at the positives when others in a similar position might not have.”We have been close for stage wins and we have had the yellow jersey taken off to get X-rays as well,” he said. ”We have experienced a spectrum of outcomes. That can only serve us for the future.”An optimistic attitude … goes a long way especially when things aren’t going well. When you think, ‘Why the hell you are doing it?’, a little bit of optimism can go along way.”
Nanjing Night Net