Philippe Gilbert: "I would like to count on Guesdon."

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01.04.2008/ In an interview with Belgian newsagency Belga, Philippe Gilbert spoke about his ambition for this weekend's Tour of Flanders. Gilbert spoke about the strong CSC and Cofidis teams but the Belgian rider said his own team is stronger as last year as well.

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Philippe Gilbert during Omloop Het Volk 2008 ( Cyclingheroes)

Philippe Gilbert (Francaise des Jeux) came in second on Sundays Brabantse Pijl after he crashed earlier in the race. Gilbert said about Brabantse Pijl: "Of course I would have to win. If I would have crashed at the moment that Chavanel took off it might have beenpossible. But last Sunday my first priority was to do a good training ride to prepare for the 'Ronde'." Gilbert added: "So I am not disappointed with my second place here. I was on the podium, just like in almost all of the races I have ridden this year."

The Francaise des Jeux captain continued by saying: "Now the most important thing is to take care of myself very well this week. At the moment getting sick is the biggest danger"

Gilbert knows that other teams are watching him. "I think the name Gilbert will be heard during the morning briefings of the teams. The others won't let me take off early in the race with a small group, not to mention that they would just let me do my thing during the final." Gibert added: "That's why I have to stay calm. My first priority is to avoid crashes and punctures. If I succeed in doing that, I will be automaticly riding the final.

Last weekend Gilbert saw what everybody saw: "CSC has the strongest block and Cofidis is almost as strong as CSC. Like always Quickstep will be stong as well. That's not so good for me. If CSC manage to survive with four riders in the final, then its going to be difficult for me because they have a strong team spirit."

"We can't control a race like CSC and Cofidis. But my teammates cam bring me far. The team is stronger in comparison with the last couple of years. If I can count on Guesdon like the way he brought me to the Poggio, I will be really satisfied."

Gilbert does not have a problem with the 'Koppenberg': "I don't care. Its part of the show and everybody has ride over it. They renovated the road and its much better now." Gilbert concluded by saying: "Yes I knwo the Koppenberg. I had to get over it before. Walking."

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