Peter Sagan might have won only one race in 2020, but the Slovakian superstar said it’s not for a lack of a love of the game.
The 30-year-old kicked to a stage win in his Giro d’Italia debut this month that marked an odd season for the three-time world champion. Sagan was blanked at the Tour de France, where archrival Sam Bennett (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) won two stages and the coveted green points jersey.
Speaking to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Sagan said he still loves racing despite seeing his lowest number of wins in his career.
“I still want to race. I still love racing,” Sagan said. “Everything changes. No one is the same as they were a decade ago, and it’s the same for racers, too.”
The star has one year left on his contract with Bora-Hansgrohe, and Sagan’s comments to the Italian sports daily is the strongest suggestion yet that he will continue racing beyond next season. Sagan has sometimes suggested he might end his career early, but next year he turns 31, and said he is still motivated to train and race.
“If I will [do] 20 races again next year, people will say I am back,” he said. “That’s not right either. I’m still here and I’m definitely not done yet.”
Since turning pro in 2010, Sagan boasts 114 victories on his palmarès, with multiple-win seasons every year except 2020. Sagan came close to early-season wins before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the racing calendar. When racing resumed, Sagan hit a string of podiums before finally punching across the line victoriusly with a solo victory in stage 10 of the Giro.
“I’m happy with how I won that stage — by attacking,” Sagan said. “I really had to fight for it. I think the public liked that and it will have a special place in my heart.”
Sagan also thanked the Italian fans for their support. He skipped the spring classics this year to target the Giro for the first time and lived up to his promise to come to Italy when the Giro was moved to October. With the Giro win, Sagan now has stage victories in all three grand tours.
“It was a beautiful Giro. Now I am a complete rider,” Sagan said. “I had a wonderful experience, and I got the win that I was missing, that I wanted.”