The Belgian has already tasted victory this season on stage 3 of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, and hopes to add to his tally – and score his 40th career victory – at the Tour of Oman, which starts on Saturday.
The six-day race will provide the 33-year-old with plenty of opportunities, and proved a happy hunting ground for Van Avermaet last year when he finally won a stage there – on his eighth appearance at the race – and took the race lead, only to lose it two days later on the stage to the climb of Green Mountain.
While he seems content that getting over the race’s iconic climb with the best is beyond him, Van Avermaet would like to add another victory or two to his palmarès before he settle down to a March and April in Europe that will be packed with racing.
“I always enjoy racing in Oman, and I think it’s a really good race for me at this point in the season, with nice weather and conditions, and mostly short stages. I’m really happy with my form and how the team worked together in Valencia, so it’ll be good to race again together this week,” said Van Avermaet in a team press release.
“It’s always nice to have a win early in the season, and I definitely hope to add another one in Oman. There are a few stages that suit me, so that’s definitely the main goal in Oman, but it’s also a good opportunity to prepare for the Classics. At this time of the year, it’s important to have racing kilometres in the legs after a long off-season, so the Tour of Oman is the perfect race for that.”
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