INTERVIEW. Cycling: ambitions, development, life with van der Poel… French nugget Axel Laurance delivers before Liège-Bastogne-Liège

He is one of the revelations of the start of the season. After discovering Milan-San Remo and the Tour of Flanders this year, Frenchman Axel Laurance will take his first steps on a third Monument, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, on Sunday April 21. He is expected there as one of the lieutenants of the ogre Mathieu van der Poel, determined to impose himself for the first time on the “Doyenne of the classics”.

The one who has just celebrated his 23rd birthday distinguished himself by winning two victories in 2024, on a stage of the Etoile de Bessèges in front of ex-world champion Mads Pedersen, then in the World Tour on the Tour of Catalonia. Since his arrival in 2023 at Alpecin-Deceuninck, the Morbihannais has reached a milestone.

Coach of the French team and consultant for France Télévisions, Thomas Voeckler promises him a future “very promising” : “He has a solid foundation. His progression is regular and the foundations are healthy. That’s what will make him last”. In an interview, the person concerned is comfortable, sure of himself, but above all does not want to skip ahead.

Franceinfo: sport: Did you expect such a good start to the season?

Axel Laurance : I felt this winter that I had really reached a new level. I felt much more solid. The goal was to be in good shape from the start to perform well at the Grand Prix La Marseillaise and at the Etoile de Bessèges. I worked hard all winter and it paid off in the first race of the season. When you win quickly, it gets you going, it gives you total confidence for the future.

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