The high was his second place finish at Tour de Poitou-Charentes, the low was when Dominique Rollin found out that his Cervelo TestTeam would stop at the end of the year.
“It was one of the best performances of the year. It proves that regardless that my team is ending and that I found myself without a team for next year, I proved that I can stay focused and perform well. I’m happy with the result which I wasn’t expecting.” Rollin told sportcom.ca. Rollin was named Sportcom Athlete of the week.
Coming into the fifth and final stage, sitting in 9th on GC and with a teammate in 4th, Rollin didn’t think much of his chances. But he made his way into the break that, with the weather degrading with rain and wind, stuck until the end.
“I never thought that our break would make it to the finish with two threats to GC.” explained Rollin who became virtual leader on the road. “When I saw the gap grow to 3 minutes, I started to believe and I rode to win. However, there was still the doubt that the peloton would reel us in with the finishing circuit.”
Rollin missed his chance to take the overall at the first intermediate sprint. He reports that he did not know where the three sprints were on the 200-km stage. He then finished 6th in the final sprint.
The hunt for a new team. His second place was good timing. “We received a nice email after a stage. It was strange, because journalists seemed to know more about the future of our team than we did. The email said that our team would cease its activities next year and that they would help us as much as possible find another team, even though for the last two months they were telling us to wait before signing anything. It is a disappointment, and it’s difficult to go through that this late in the season. I was expecting that my contract would be renewed and let’s just say that I didn’t sleep well the following night.”
Rollin joined the Cervelo TestTeam in 2009 after a breakout year with Toyota-United in 2008. Previously, he raced for 5 years with French amateur teams in France before returning to race for two years in North America.
“After a month or two of stress with respect to the team’s future, I managed to put myself in a bubble to concentrate. Now, I need results to find a new job,” the 27-year old joked. “I am talking with a few teams and we’ll see how it evolves, but let’s just say that last week’s result helped me show the reasons a team would have to hire me.”
Satisfied with his season. On his second year racing pro in Europe, Rollin is satisfied, and wants to continue in the same vein with the two ProTour races coming up in Quebec and Montreal.
“If I look at my chancing calendar, I think I had a good season. There were a lot of last-minute changes so it was a big challenge. I needed to be ready physically without knowing which race I would be at. I’m happy with my debuts in the Classics such as Paris-Roubaix and Tour of Flanders where I was a good asset for the team.”
It is time for Canada to shine in the two races.
“Canada is not only able to host two major events, but also capable of results on the international scene, which was demonstrated in recent months with a superb performance by Ryder Hesjedal in le Tour de France , Team Spidertech’s good results in France, and my second place finish. We are able to race internationally and if we can do it on the national team, it will be even better.”