Richie Porte: This is not how I wanted to start the season
12 May 2019 12:52
Richie Porte's first season with Trek-Segafredo has not gone to plan so far after his early season was blown up with a bout of bronchitis, but the 34-year-old Australian is at the Tour of California this week looking to turn things around as he continues to build towards the Tour de France. Porte started his season on a high note, taking his sixth consecutive win on Willunga Hill at the Tour Down Under and finishing second overall to Mitchelton-Scott's Daryl Impey. He stayed at home in Australia for the Herald Sun Tour, where he placed fifth overall, but things quickly went downhill from there as bronchitis set in. He put in a lacklustre performance at the UAE Tour and then decided to skip Paris-Nice – a race he's won twice – in favour of racing at the Volta a Catalunya. Porte's performance there didn't grab any headlines, with his best finish coming in the team time trial on stage 1. After Catalunya, Porte took an extended break to recover, and is now in California to start sharpening his form for July.ADVERTISEMENT "I haven't had the best start to the season," he said at the pre-race press conference in Sacramento. "With a new team, it's a bit of a funny one, but to come here, it's always motivating to do new races. It's the first time for me, so I'm really looking forward to stepping out on Sunday and getting things started. "Of course, I'm always motivated, but it's not been a great start to the year," Porte said. "The Tour Down Under was good, and then continually getting sick and changing race programmes is not how I wanted to start with Trek-Segafredo. "But the motivation is always good. It's a good quality field here, so it's not as simple as just wanting it and then it happening. But as long as I'm motivated, I think that's a step in the right direction."
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