The magnitude of Peter Sagan’s achievement in becoming world champion for a third consecutive year hadn’t completely sunk in before people started wondering about the possibility of a fourth.
On Sunday the Slovakian became one of only five riders to win the elite men’s World Championships road race three times, and the first to win them consecutively.
“Let me enjoy this title, I don’t want to think about next year,” he said in the immediate aftermath of his victory.
However, he has since opened up a little more about the prospect of a fourth straight title in 2018, saying that “nothing is impossible”, despite the amount of climbing on the route in Innsbruck, Austria.
While Richmond in 2015 and Bergen this year provided punchy courses that are perfectly suited to the 27-year-old, and Qatar last year threw up a more traditional bunch sprint, the Innsbruck course, unveiled last week, contains 4,670 metres of altitude gain.
Speaking to Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport at a mountainbike event this week, Sagan dismissed the notion that he could target Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Il Lombardia – races with similar loads of climbing – next season.
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