Press Conference: MATTHEW WALLS
How are you feeling about the win?
It’s pretty mad really. After the Olympics and all that, I managed to get some good results on the road after, so it’s good to know that I can switch between them pretty well.
Were you nervous about continuing that form?
Yes, I was a bit. I had a few races in Italy before the last one which I won. I could find my way back into it then, get some races under my belt. I knew that I was going pretty well, I felt reasonably confident.
How was winning a one-day race?
I felt pretty good. Since the Olympics I raced in Norway, and a few in Paris and Belgium, and then the Italian block before the last one, so I had quite a lot of racing under my belt which was nice. It was actually a little bit of a shorter distance than the other ones.
What’s it like beating some of the best sprinters in the world?
Obviously we looked at it before and knew that it was a really strong field. It’s pretty mad to know that I can beat them on my day.
How did you deal with the positioning in the final?
It was important. My team-mates got me into a really good place with 10 to five km to go; they had been keeping me out of trouble for the last 40km or something like that. They kept me in a good place, I just got onto a really good wheel, and I fought in between different riders. Obviously we didn’t have a full leadout train, so I was just floating about finding some good wheels, and I just got into a good place. I’m glad I had the legs to finish off my good position.
Is that something you can learn, or does it come naturally?
I think it is from track. I think that helps me be comfortable in a bunch and knowing what to do. I knew going into it that we wouldn’t have that big leadout train, so I was looking out for the right wheels.
I just went in knowing what I had to do in order to get into the right place.
Do you now have more confidence for next season?
For sure. It has been a pretty messy year with covid and going to the Olympics, so it will be nice to focus on the road and give it a good crack knowing what I can do.