Dariusz Batek is a really versatile cyclist. He started with mountain biking, then he did very well on the road. In this season he has returned to MTB to fight for the start in the Olympic Games.
At the same time the CCC Polsat Polkowice rider is starting in the Cup of Poland Skandia Maraton Lang Team, where he hopes for a victory in the general classification.
– Before the season you decided to put MTB in the first place. You fought for the start in the Olympic Games, but you did not succeed. What was missing?
– MTB has changed a lot recently. The races became very quick, and the routes extremely technical. The lack of contact with mountain biking in the last two years put me way behind. My position at the start also did not help, since it was around 120.
– Since Lublin you have been starting in the Cup of Poland Skandia Maraton Lang Team. What made you start in that event?
– First of all, the fact is that Skandia the most media-oriented MTB event in Poland. It is extremely important for our sponsor – the CCC company. I am going to keep starting in the Cup of Poland until the end and to fight for the victory in the general classification.
– The race in Lublin did not go quite as you had planned, but in Gdańsk you dispelled your rivals’ illusions. How do you evaluate those two starts?
– I went for the race in Lublin still taking antibiotics. There I cared only to lose as little as possible, whereas to Gdańsk I went with one goal only – to win! I managed to carry out the plan at one hundred per cent.
– Apart from Bartosz Banach you are the main favourite to win the general classification of the Cup of Poland Skandia Maraton Lang Team. Unfortunately, the two missed editions mean you cannot afford to make a mistake. How do you evaluate your chances?
– It’s true. Now I have to ride faultlessly all the remaining editions. In fact, for me the Cup of Poland started only in Lublin, my chances are still very big, but I do not have a lot of workload starting in the leader’s jersey. At least now…
– Apart from you in the Cup of Poland there will be representatives of other professional groups such as: JBG-2, HP-Sferis, or in women Magda Sadłecka from CCC Polkowice. Does it indicate that the level of the Cup of Poland Skandia Lang Team in the MTB Maratone MTB has risen?
– Exactly, and it’s because Czesław Lang is able to make sure the races are broadcast by Telewizja Polska. Each sponsor cares much about advertisement on television, and the reports from this year’s struggle are shown at the best times.
– Soon the 69th Tour de Pologne UCI World Tour begins, in which certainly your team-mate, Marek Rutkiewicz, will start. Will he, in your opinion, succeed in winning our national Tour?
– Rutek has shown a very even and high form from the beginning of the year. He is a rider able to arrive in a high place during a flat stage. Marek has also improved his time trial skills, and nothing needs to be said about his displays of skills in the mountains. He is a complete rider in each aspect and I think his chances for the victory are very big. But… how this year’s Tour de Pologne will end – we will see. There isn’t a 100% favourite.
Source: Press Office of Lang Team