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This article originally appeared on Velo News
Dutch all-rounder Bauke Mollema isn’t going anywhere.
Once considered a Tour de France podium challenger, Mollema now hunts out stages and one-day classics with big successes at Il Lombardia and at the grand tours.
“As everyone knows, my role has changed a little bit in the last years, and it will probably change more over the next few years,” Mollema said. “When I came to this team it was mainly as a GC rider, targeting the Tour in particular. After doing that for many years, I started to focus on one-day races and more recently, hunting stages in grand tours. I like that role and maybe, at this moment in my career, it fits me a bit better than going for the GC.”
Mollema, 36 in November, joined Trek-Segafredo in 2015. He said the team is “like a family.”
"It's been eight years now with the team, and I have felt really happy here since the very beginning, and I still can't imagine being anywhere else,” he said in a team media note. “As riders, part of our job is also to help Trek develop and improve products not just for us but for the company as well. It's maybe a little bit of a different relationship and more intense than in other teams, but I also really like that side of things here."
Also read: Wait for stage win continues for Mollema
General manager Luca Guercilena said it was easy to offer Mollema a deal to stay with Trek-Segafredo for four more years.
"To have him with us for the next chapter of his career gives me confidence that the main pillars of our Team will continue to hold us up at the top of the cycling world," Guercilena said.
-- Bauke Mollema (@BaukeMollema) May 29, 2022
The Dutchman is currently in his eighth year with Trek-Segafredo and over that time, he has played a key role in the success of the team with victories including Il Lombardia, Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa as well as stages at the Tour de France.
"Bauke is one of the best professional riders we've seen in years. He is a real fighter, a true racer, and he is constantly setting a good example for the new generation. He is one of the captains of our team, and I believe he can help make our team grow even stronger," Guercilena said.
"His racing role in the team will be unchanged, targeting one-day races and stage hunting where I am sure he will continue to have success."
Also read: Is Mollema the peloton’s next Valverde?
Is this the final chapter for Mollema? He's not ruling anything out with his love and passion for the sport still as strong as when he first turned professional in 2008. Mollema will be 40 when the latest deal concludes.
"At the moment, it's quite likely this will be my last contract, but who knows what I will be thinking after four years,” he said. “I've always said that I still feel quite young. I've been a professional for 15 years, but I still really like what I do.
“I like to train hard. I like to race. I like to be competitive and get the best out of my body; I am constantly trying to improve and setting new goals for myself, even now."
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