Alessandro Fancellu: “I don’t feel much pressure, I try to do my best every day”

The 2020 season will be unforgettable due to its tremendous exceptionality, derived from a pandemic of a global nature, and its influence on the impossible normal development of a season where the entire calendar that has been possible to recover after the ‘lockdown’ and the stoppage has been concentrated in just over three months. Little time, and fewer opportunities, for the peloton, regardless of the age or youth of its members. But this 2020 will also be especially unforgettable for Alessandro Fancellu.

The young Lombard, who will turn 21 next April, has faced his first season as a professional with a very interesting first part, including a podium in the Tour de Antalya, and a second more complicated one due to falls and illness. Although there had been speculation about his leap to the Trek-Segafredo, Fancellu will continue in 2021 with EOLO-KOMETA. “This year I will never forget my first career as a professional,” he says. “I started the season in the Vuelta a Murcia, it was my first time racing against professionals, and of course it will be something I will always remember”.

How does Alessandro himself assess his season? The Lombard is very clear: “Honestly, I expected a better season. The start was good, especially because during the winter I had a wrist injury and I thought it would be noticed. But I started well, fresh. I liked that. After Antalya, the lockdown ruined all the planning we had done over the winter. When the season resumed, I tried hard to get back into the best physical condition. In the Vuelta a Burgos I felt good, but with my mind mainly on a Giro u23 which was the main objective of the season. I arrived with good sensations, I felt confident and I thought I could achieve a good result. But during the second stage I fell three times. It was a crazy stage. It was raining a lot and the road was very slippery. It was like soap. Many cyclists went to the ground that day”.

Despite the incidents, Alessandro kept his options intact for several days, but ended up wasting time. “As the days went by I felt worse. My legs didn’t work. Each day was worse than the last. I thought that the feeling was due to the falls, but the truth is that the worsening was general. After the Giro I had some tests and the result was that I had become ill. I tried to recover for the Italian championship, but I couldn’t finish. Then I was on antibiotics for a fortnight”.

The 2020 season, beyond its uniqueness, has highlighted the power of a generation of young riders. Fancellu is another of those members and he himself accompanied Remco Evenepoel, perhaps his great standard-bearer alongside Tadej Pogacar, on the podium at the World Championships in Innsbruck. “This year we have seen many young cyclists who have made impressive numbers. Pogacar, Hirschi, Hindley, Remco himself… When a youngster puts in a good performance, both the media and the fans pay more attention to them and then all that attention increases even more. Personally I don’t feel much pressure about it, I try to do my best every day and you’ll see where we are in the future. In Burgos, Fancellu was able to share the bib with Evenepoel, the eventual winner of the Vuelta: “Honestly, we don’t have a deep relationship either, but we did talk at some point during the race. I think he’s a great kid”.

At the end of August, the arrival of EOLO as the new main sponsor of the project was announced, which will bring the project to a higher level. More races. More important races. More responsibility, but it is also a multi-year project. Fancellu values this news very positively and is convinced that it will help everyone to make a jump. “The arrival of EOLO is a reward for the professionalism of Fran, Ivan and all those who are part of the team. The news is obviously very good, it’s better for everyone. The team is going to have more races and also, much more importantly, it is going to allow all the riders to show themselves more and on the best stages. Personally it is news that excites and motivates. And with the experience gained in 2020, it makes you look forward to 2021 with enthusiasm, curiosity and ambition”.

(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)