Schleck brothers to be guided again by Andersen in 2014
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Thursday, October 03, 2013

Schleck brothers to be guided again by Andersen in 2014

by Shane Stokes at 10:20 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Former pro will guide top riders, says he believes both Schlecks can return to past level

Andy SchleckKim Andersen’s mentor role to the two Schleck brothers will continue in 2014 with the news that he will indeed be part of the new Trek team setup.

The former Danish pro has played an influential role in their career and is regarded as the person closest to the two brothers on the current RadioShack Leopard squad.

“We have agreed on an initial one-year contract and then we will see what happens,” Andersen told BT. “I think it is a very exciting project that has been started and it is a project that should last for many years.”

Andersen accompanied the Schlecks, Fabian Cancellara and others during the exodus from Team Saxo Bank at the end of the 2010 season. He worked with them as part of the new Leopard setup, and the importance of their collaboration became clear last year when tensions arose between the Schlecks and Johan Bruyneel over the latter’s decision to push Andersen into a smaller role.

The Belgian said that Andersen would not be allowed to work on the Tour de France, ensuring that the Schlecks would have to accept the guidance of himself and others.

As things turned out, that decision proved to be irrelevant. Andy Schleck crashed prior to the Tour and was unable to take part due to a fractured pelvis, while his brother tested positive for a diuretic and left the race.

As for Bruyneel, he sat out the Tour due to the serious doping allegations made against him during the USADA investigation.

In December of last year Andersen said that he had been given back his former role. “It is my job to get Andy to ride strongly again. It will be like old times,” he told Sporten.dk then. “I am going to be in the races that Andy will ride, and I shall try to get him up to speed so he’ll race as he did in the past.”

Schleck was coming back from his injury and was able to return to a relatively high level in time for the Tour de France.

However since then he appears to have lost momentum again.

Andersen will be charged with turning things around for the rider and also helping Frank Schleck get back to up to speed after a year and a half out of racing.

He will also work with the team’s top Classics rider. “When we have a rider Fabian Cancellara on the team, then there will be much focus on him and he will try to follow up on the results he has shown in recent years. We hope that Andy and Frank come back to the top in the big races.”

According to BT, Andersen made clear to Trek that he would only come on board if Frank Schleck was also signed by the team. That is indeed the case, and so he will be part of the squad next year.

“Right now I could not imagine being on a team other than them,” he said. “I am convinced that they can come back to the top level. I know that Frank is on the level, and I hope that Andy can be brought back at the top level. Andy's not getting old, just because things have gone badly for two years. So of course it may be possible to get back to the top level.”

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