Edvald Boasson Hagen is one of the strongest all-rounders in the sport and has claimed over 60 victories since launching his career in 2006. The highest-profile of those were the two Tour de France stages he won for Team Sky in 2011, and the Norwegian can also boast triumphs at Ghent-Wevelgem, the Giro d’Italia, and six national titles among a glittering palmares.
The ability to win from bunch sprints, breakaways and time trials have marked Boasson Hagen out as one of the most versatile talents in the peloton, and even when he is not going for victories himself, he can be found burying himself in support of his team-mates.
Q & A
Who inspired you to start cycling?My brother started cycling and I wanted to do the same as him.
First bike:A blue Monarch.
First cycling club:The Lillehammer Cycling Club.
Childhood hero:I never looked up to any cyclists or other people. I never watched cycling when I was a kid. I just rode my bike and enjoyed it.
What do you love most about cycling?It's nice to do cycling for a living when it's your hobby as well. I don't really think of it as work.
What has cycling taught you?As a pro cyclist you get to travel the world and pick up things from all different cultures.
Previous teams:2006-07 Team Maxbo Bianchi; 2008-09 Team Columbia High Road
Favourite race:Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Flanders. They're really big races and very hard. It's a special feeling when you ride them and it would be great to win one.
Favourite ride:There are a lot of good rides in Majorca which I do at our winter training camps.
How do you know when you have good form?Everything is going smooth and I don't feel pain. It's a good feeling to drop other riders.
How do you keep going when you're on the limit?You have to block out bad thoughts and focus on the good. Keep pedalling -that's key to being a good cyclist.
Career highlight:My two Tour de France stage wins in 2011.
If you weren't a rider, what would you be?I'd liked to have studied electro-mechanics. I'd also liked to have been a motorsport driver.
Interests away from cycling:I like all types of gadgets and especially cameras.
Favourite film:I don't have one.
Favourite music:I listen to everything that plays on the radio.
Best friend in the peloton:Lars-Petter Nordhaug
Funniest team-mate:There are a lot of funny guys on our team but I'd say Bradley and Danny.
Best friend in the peloton:Geraint Thomas, Lars-Petter Nordhaug and Gabriel Rasch.
Favourite food:A good well-prepared steak
Most famous person you've met:Prime Minister of Norway
Best advice:Have fun and train hard.
Norwegian Time Trial Championships - 1st
Tour of Britain - 1st overall and three stage wins; Norwegian Time Trial Championships - 1st
Tour of Poland - 3rd overall and two stage wins; Eneco Tour - 1st overall and three stage wins; Tour of Britain - 1st overall and four stage wins; Giro d'Italia - 1st stage seven; Ghent-Wevelgem - 1st; Norwegian Time Trial Championships - 1st
Tour of Qatar - 1st stage one (TTT); Tour of Oman - 1st points classification, 1st young riders classification, 1st stage three, 1st stage six; Tirreno-Adriatico - 1st stage seven; Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré - 1st stage seven; Eneco Tour - 1st points classification; Dutch Food Valley Classic - 1st; Norwegian Time Trial Championships - 1st
Tour de France - two stage wins; Eneco Tour - 1st overall and one stage win; Vattenfall Cyclassics - 1st; Bayern-Rundfahrt - 1st stage one; Norwegian Time Trial Championships - 1st
Volta ao Algarve - 1st stage two; Tirreno - Adriatico - 1st stage three; Tour of Norway - 1st overall and one stage win; Critérium du Dauphiné - 1st stage three; Norwegian Road Race Championships - 1st; GP Ouest France - Plouay - 1st