Former team-mate Yates says he’ll use his knowledge of Armstrong to beat him
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Monday, January 18, 2010

Former team-mate Yates says he’ll use his knowledge of Armstrong to beat him

by Conal Andrews at 8:04 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling

For years Sean Yates and Lance Armstrong competed together on the Motorola team, with the older British rider teaching the young Texan a lot about the pro scene and the sport. Following his retirement he went into team management and moved to the Discovery Channel setup in 2005, working alongside Lance Armstrong in his final year of racing.

Yates knows Armstrong’s strengths and weaknesses far better than most, and will seek to use this knowledge to Team Sky’s advantage. Come July, Bradley Wiggins will be up against the Texan and Yates’ goal will be to ensure that this time round, the Briton finishes in front.

"We think alike, I know exactly how Lance is going to react on a bike to any given situation. One way or another we have been there before, there is no scenario we haven't faced together,” he said, according to the Telegraph.

"And he reads me like a book as well, in fairness. Further down the line this season it could become very interesting. Lance is a totally unique human being and athlete but from now on part of my job will be finding ways of beating him, especially come the Tour de France in July.”

Yates said that he hoped he could catch up with Armstrong at the Tour Down Under, showing that the vibe between them remains cordial. Both are completely committed to their respective causes, though, and so while a personal relationship might persist, the professional interactions could be quite a bit more competitive this summer.

Armstrong is now 38 years of age and, according to Yates, he’ll have to use his brain to make up for decreasing strength.

"Lance can be pretty extreme like me, he knows how to handle the pain and how to survive in the red zone,” he said. “But he isn't getting any younger. As somebody who tried to ride competitively until my late 30s, I know that physically you reach a point where you cannot improve anymore. Lance has reached that point. From now on he will increasingly be relying on racing skill, cunning and teamwork.

"We will have to match him in all those departments. But the great thing for us is that we have a general classification rider in Bradley Wiggins who definitely has not reached his peak yet, physically, as a big Tour rider."


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