Schleck satisfied with Tour de Suisse conclusion: ‘Overall I had good feelings’
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Monday, June 17, 2013

Schleck satisfied with Tour de Suisse conclusion: ‘Overall I had good feelings’

by Shane Stokes at 3:09 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de Suisse
 
Improving form for 2010 Tour de France winner

Andy SchleckHe’s still some way off the form he showed in other years but Andy Schleck has reported himself satisfied with the level he showed in the Tour de Suisse. His performance in the race confirms that he has improved his condition compared to earlier this year, and that he is finally shaking off the effects of the bad fracture he suffered just over one year ago.

Schleck finished a solid 35th in the final day time trial, three minutes and four seconds behind the winner Rui Costa (Movistar). He’s not a time trial specialist by any means but although the ten kilometre climb at the end of the test will have helped limit his losses compared to others who would normally beat him, he nevertheless conceded time on the flatter section beforehand.

In that light his performance is a respectable one. It ensued he ended the WorldTour race in fortieth place overall. While he was a long way behind some of those who will head to the Tour de France with ambition, the fact that he finished back in 24th in 2009 and then went on to net second in the Tour means it is conceivable that his upwards trend will continue in the sport’s biggest race.

“That was a hard TT,” he said yesterday after his effort. “We changed the bikes before the climb but it was the last stage so we’re already a bit tired. It was a good test on the last day. The climb felt ok to me, but riding it alone instead of with a teammate or others around isn’t such a good measure. But overall I had good feelings.”

Schleck’s confidence is gradually improving and his current form is a long way off the race-abandoning condition he had in the months after his bad Critérium du Dauphiné crash twelve months ago. While it will almost certainly be too soon for him to be a contender in this year’s Tour, the upwards trend suggests that he could be back to top form for the Vuelta a España.

RadioShack Leopard team-mate Chris Horner recently told VeloNation that he, Schleck and Schleck’s brother Frank will be the likely team leaders there, and that he believed that one of them could be in a position to win the race overall.

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