One of the most successful Grand Tour riders of the modern era, Jonas Vingegaard has continually focused his season around peaking at the Tour de France in recent years. With the Paris Olympics immediately following the race this year, could he continue his high level into a gold medal charge?
“I hope that I will be selected, but it will not surprise me if I am not. It may well be that the national coach chooses four others instead,” Vingegaard recently said to Danish news agency Ritzau on the possibility of him turning up to the Olympic Games. “I have told Anders Lund that I am interested in riding. But he explained to me that it is not certain that I will be selected, even if I want to. I also understand that well.”
"I loved watching Marco Pantani. The duels between Lance Armstrong and Jan Ullrich were also nice" - Peter Sagan on his cycling idols growing up
Although there is plenty of accumulated climbing over the Paris course, it's more about the repeated short, steep kickers than the long climbs that Vingegaard usually does more damage. “I still have a dream of riding the Olympics at some point, but I don't think the route suits me particularly well,” said Vingegaard. “There are so many good riders in Denmark, and when there are only four places, nothing is certain.”
Given the course, Denmark's best hope for Olympic Gold could be Mads Pedersen. With this being the case, Vingegaard may be forced to switch his attention to Zurich and the World Championships. "It is somewhat safer, both because there is room for more riders and the route suits my type of rider better,” Vingegaard admits. “There may not be quite as many Danes for whom that type of route is suitable. You could of course always find a better route, but this is probably one of the best ones I will experience at a World Championship.”