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Q&A with Cal Watson before the Tour of California

Roar Guru
10th May, 2014
0

Calvin Watson is a 21 year old rider for Trek Factory racing. He is in his first full year as a pro.

He competed in his first La Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège and recently finished the Tour de Romandie while rooming with Jens “shut up legs” Voigt. On Sunday he will start the Tour of California.

Question:
You raced your first La Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne–Liège – what were your thoughts on these great races particularly the LBL or the “la Doyenne”. What was your role in these races?

Watson:
Fleche and Liege were amazing races to be apart of, especially riding in support of Frank Schleck and Julian Arredondo who both showed they had great legs there. These are defiantly races that I would like to look at in the future and to have the opportunity to ride them in my first year was a great experience and something I can use for the future years. It was goose bump material riding up the Mur de Huy, the crowds in Belgium are amazing and something special for the riders.

Question:
You raced the Strade Bianche and I interviewed you on the eve of the race, you ended up achieving a credible 28th, how did that race pan out for you?

Watson:
Strade Bianche was a great race, I was there to support Fabian Cancellara and the team where I could. I was lucky to make the crucial splits and to end up being there in the final was a really nice confidence booster.

Question:
During the Tour de Romandie you roomed with Jens Voigt how was this experience with living alongside a living legend of the sport?

Watson:
Jens is a great person to be around, he is vibrant and full of experience. Having him around in a tough stage race like Romandie is great, he always keeps the spirits high in the team, and when you are suffering that is important. I am really fortunate to race with him in his final year.

Question:
You seemed to be making a logical progression with Trek, racing bigger and harder races, to an outsider Trek seems to be looking after you very well, even allowing you to compete in your home Sun-Herald tour as the previous champion. How have things been at Trek Factory Racing?

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Watson:
The support from Trek has been amazing, I have had an amazing race program so far. With a nice mix of World Tour races and lower grade races, it’s important for a young rider like myself to have a mix.

Question:
Your next race the Tour of California is coming up next week, what would your personal goal be for this race?

Watson:
I am really excited to be here in California, we have a nice mix of youth and experience in the team this week and I think we can expect to be competitive across all terrain. I’ll look to support our GC rider in the medium climbs where I can. And if the opportunity arrives to be in a breakaway, you never know.

Question:
I believe your race after Cali is Criterium Dauphine – could this mean you may be racing your first Grand Tour, the Tour de France this year?

Watson:
After California I will return to Europe for the Dauphine, another really tough World Tour race. After the Dauphine I will take a break and let the body recover. I won’t be riding the Tour, there has been talk of going to the Vuelta, but we will see how my body is copping. I want to take it one step at a time, I’m still 21 and it may be better to wait another year to ride a grand tour.

Follow Cal on Twitter: @calvin_watson