Cycling news - Nathan Haas: ‘Don’t race for results, race for performances’
Australian Nathan Haas ‘creeps’ into second on general classification just four seconds off race leader Alexey Lutsenko with one stage remaining at the 2018 Presidential Tour of Turkey …
While queen stage winner Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) remained the overall race leader following Álvaro Hodeg (Quick-Step) penultimate stage win in Manisa, Nathan Haas (Katusha) leapfrogged last year’s Tour of Turkey winner Diego Ulissi (UAE-Team Emirates) to close to within four seconds of the race leader.
The 29-year-old Australian’s third-place result behind 2015 Paris-Roubaix and Milan-San Remo winner John Degenkolb (Trek-Segafredo) and Hodeg vaulted Haas from fourth on general classification at six seconds back to second overall with one stage remaining in the six-day UCI WorldTour race — a 166.7-kilometre stage from Bursa to Istanbul.
Haas, who recorded his sole victory of the season back in February with a stage win at the Tour of Oman en route to a points classification title, has been on the cusp all year. Not only did the former Dimension Data and Garmin-Sharp rider finish Oman fifth on GC, the two-time Japan Cup winner (2014, 2011) and 2012 Tour of Britain champion recorded top five finishes in both the national road race and individual time trial championships a month earlier.
With other top five stage results at the Tour Down Under and Tour de Suisse, as well as an eighth-place finish at the Grand Prix Cycliste in Montréal spread across the breadth of the season, Haas a proven himself consistent over the course of a season spanning 10 months.
“Normally it’s hard to get to the end of October and have motivation and good legs, but this year I’ve been super hungry,” Haas told Eurosport. “I’m getting older, but I think I’m getting better each year.
" It’s not the biggest race in the world, but every time you reinstate the confidence in yourself, you can really prepare for the next year with a smile and maybe an extra gear in the back of the bike."
When asked the importance of leaving Turkey with a top result, the creator of Attack the Pack was quick to respond with an explanation of his own approach to cycling.
"We have been really focusing this week on producing a team performance,” he continued. “It’s really shown this week when you put energy into the group and not the individual you can really come away with something special.
“It’s been a great example of teamwork and we are loving it.”