Kittel: I Don't Really Care What Other People Think About Me

Marcel Kittel (Katusha-Alpecin)

Like Mark Cavendish before him, Marcel Kittel has discovered that when a sprinter reaches a certain, rarefied level, his defeats become more newsworthy than his victories. After winning 26 races during an all-conquering two-year stint at Quick-Step Floors, Kittel must have known that every setback in his maiden season at Katusha-Alpecin would be parsed to the umpteenth degree. The nadir of a difficult debut season came at last month's Tour de France, where Kittel failed to win a stage and was eliminated after finishing outside the time limit at La Rosière on the second day in the Alps. By then, a throwaway line from directeur sportif Dimitri Konyshev in an interview with L'Équipe – "We pay him a lot of money, but he is only interested in himself" – had already generated its share of headlines. Come the third week of the Tour, it was being reported that Kittel was ...

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