He’s only been a professional rider for just over four months, but Adam Yates has given a clear indication of his talent by already taking a stage plus the overall in a UCI 2.HC race, namely the Presidential Tour of Turkey.
The British Orica GreenEdge rider has said that he is taking nothing for granted as regards the future, but will work hard and see how things develop.
“I am 21, a first year professional, so I can’t really say I want to win this, this or this,” he told the media at the end of the Turkish race.
“You can dream but it is a difficult sport, cycling. You have got to be realistic. Hopefully in the next few years if I improve how I want to and I put the hard training in, who knows.”
Asked if he saw himself doing Grand Tours, he said that this would likely be one area where his abilities would be suited. “Yeah…mainly mountain top finishes, stage races,” he said. “You have to be realistic these days. Hopefully I will improve in the future and I’ll take it from there.”
Yates went into the race alongside his twin brother Simon; both have taken results in the past which underline their ability. Prior to his results in Turkey, Adam Yates finished second overall in last year’s Tour de L’Avenir and was also the best young rider in this year’s Tour de San Luis, his first pro race.
Having previously taken a stage win in the 2011 Tour de l’Avenir, Simon Yates landed a mountain stage win in last year’s Tour of Britain and finished third overall. He also took two more stages wins in the Tour de l’Avenir, became world track race champion and was best young rider in the An Post Rás.
He was actually supposed to be Orica GreenEdge’s leader in Turkey, but crashed out of the race with a broken collarbone. Adam Yates accepts that his brother would likely have taken the overall.
“We’re pretty similar riders. He was going well after the Tour of the Basque Country and he was the obvious choice for a leader,” he said. “It’s a shame he broke his collarbone as he would probably be the winner overall anyway.
“As I say, we are pretty similar riders so every time he is going for a stage or for the overall, I will be there or thereabouts.
“In a way it is a shame he is there [out of the race] but we have always got a plan B when we ride together.”
Next up for Yates is the Amgen Tour of California. That race begins on Sunday, giving him time to recover from his Turkish efforts and to see if he can keep his momentum going. He said that he wasn’t sure yet what role he would play in the US, whether or not he would be able to chase personal ambitions.
“I am not sure who else is going there, so I might be working or trying to go for a stage,” he explained. “As I say, I’m young and I don’t really have any targets. I go into every race just looking for an opportunity. If an opportunity comes around, I take it up. But I will just take it day by day.”
Watch the video above for Yates’ full reaction to his Tour of Turkey win, his thoughts on having a team like Orica GreenEdge working for him and whether he feels that this victory will accelerate his career path.