Andy Schleck officially withdrawn from Luxembourg Olympic team
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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Andy Schleck officially withdrawn from Luxembourg Olympic team

by Ben Atkins at 10:54 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Olympics, Injury
Country requests replacement with RadioShack-Nissan teammate Laurent Didier

andy schleckAfter it was announced by his RadioShack-Nissan team last week, that participation in the Olympic Games would be out of the question, Andy Schleck has been officially withdrawn by the Luxembourg Cycling Federation (FSCL), according to The 27-year-old former Tour de France winner fractured his sacrum - a bone at the base of the spine - in a crash during the time trial of last month’s Critérium du Dauphiné, and has not yet recovered sufficiently to be able to train properly for the race.

Dageblatt reports that a medical certificate has been presented to both the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Cycling Union (UCI) today (Tuesday), which officially withdraws Schleck from the Luxembourg Olympic team. The FSCL has also reportedly applied for the late inclusion of Schleck’s RadioShack-Nissan teammate, Luxembourg national champion Laurent Didier, as a replacement.

Schleck’s withdrawal from the Games is yet another blow to what has been something of a nightmare season for the rider. An indifferent spring, where his best results were 22nd overall in the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire, and 50th in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, his Dauphiné crash saw him sit out his main season target, the Tour de France. On road issues have also been followed by problems off the bike, where internal struggles in the RadioShack-Nissan team have seen him - and elder brother Fränk - in conflict with manager Johan Bruyneel.

Both Schleck’s - as well as Tour de France prologue winner Fabian Cancellara - have also been named as riders that have complained to the UCI over unpaid salaries.

Assuming that Didier is allowed to replace Andy Schleck, he will line up alongside Fränk in Luxembourg’s two-man line up in the road race on July 28th. Didier, who turns 28 years old on Thursday, has had a far better season than the rider he is set to replace, and recently finished 12th in the Österreich-Rundfahrt, as well as taking his national title.

Despite withdrawing from the Giro d’Italia, Fränk Schleck is also enjoying a far better season than his younger brother, finishing second in last month’s Tour de Suisse, and currently sits 12th overall in the Tour de France. He is also set to ride the time trial on August 1st.

Luxembourg will be represented in the women's road race on July 29th by national road and time trial champion Christin Majerus of Team GSD Gestion.

Having now missed his season’s primary targets, Andy Schleck will likely hope to aim at the Vuelta a España - which starts in Pamplona on August 18th - where he would once again come face to face with old Tour rival Alberto Contador, who returns from suspension next month.


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