Jai Hindley was the surprising winner of the Giro d'Italia. Now, he described the aftermath of the Italian race, and his expectations for the rest of what is so far the most important season of his career.
In an interview with ABC News, Hindley described his Giro d'Italia feeling: "It's still really crazy actually when I think about it. I still can't believe it, to be honest. It was really a massive achievement and a big dream of mine since I was a young kid to not only compete at a grand tour but, maybe, one day win one … to do that now at 26 is a real game-changer for sure. You know, it's something you work for your whole career, your whole life."
"When you actually get that big result, I can't describe it. I think it will open up some other doors and we'll see what comes next," he added. I always sort of had that self-belief and, yeah, it doesn't really change much in that aspect … but to win a grand tour, I think it would give me a lot more confidence, especially in the next grand tours I do."
Hindley won at Blockhaus, but it was his consistency throughout the three weeks that earned him the victory. In the final true ascent of the race - the Passo Fedaia - he finally managed to crack Richard Carapaz and rode into his maiden Grand Tour victory. Now this coming month, he will be eyeing the Vuelta a España where he will once again battle Carapaz, but also the likes of Tadej Pogacar and Primoz Roglic who are currently at the Tour de France.
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"It's going to be a really hard race. A lot of the real strong guys will be there, so it's going to be a class field … guys from the Giro, guys who are doing the tour will be there. I think the level will be really high and, hopefully, I can be up there. That'd be pretty cool," he said.
His second Grand Tour of the season, Hindley bounced back this year after a disappointing 2021 and will alongside a very strong BORA - hansgrohe lineup try to conquer the Spanish Grand Tour.
As for the World Championships he's mentioned that a priority is to be chosen, and a result is not yet on his mind: "I think everyone on the team will be worthy of this selection and I think they'll take a class team to the race, so — hopefully — I can be there. If I can be there and wear the green and gold in Wollongong, that would be really a once-in-a-career-type race. That'd be really nice," he concluded.