Greipel admits frustration following non-selection for Milan-Sanremo
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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Greipel admits frustration following non-selection for Milan-Sanremo

by Jered Gruber at 8:38 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia, Volta a Catalunya, Milan-Sanremo

It seems that the unlikely coexistence between two of the world's best sprinters on the same team is just how most had thought it would be: not an easy one. This is an understood fact, but HTC-Columbia has done a good job over the past two seasons of downplaying any conflict between Mark Cavendish and Andre Greipel. The two riders have run entirely separate schedules and reaped incredible amounts of success in their respective spheres.

Greipel's success, however, meant that the siren call of the big races could not be too long in coming. Two of the biggest races for a sprinter, Milano-Sanremo and the Tour de France could not possibly stay out of the picture forever and, once Mark Cavendish's form showed itself to be less than stellar, Greipel had to have wanted the chance. Mark Cavendish's finish at Sanremo, over six minutes behind Oscar Freire, was enough warrant a comment from the lean, muscular German. Greipel was frank about his feelings about being left off the team: "It was a slap in the face. My performances have not been so bad to deserve being left off the team."

Cavendish, owner of a grand total of zero wins in 2010, put together a solid showing, so much so that Cavendish halfway admitted to being surprised himself, though a run of rotten luck put paid to any hope of a repeat in Sanremo.

With this in mind, it makes Greipel's plight even more painful. Greipel has six wins to his 2010 tally so far and states the facts: "Cavendish currently has some problems. I've done some good races. When it comes to a sprint, you can count on me."

Greipel has good reason to feel the sting of the cold shoulder from his squad, but he fears for the worst in regards to the centerpiece of most everyone's season: July. "I have so far been pleased with the team, but if I didn't get a start in Milan-Sanremo, I think I can expect that my summer holidays will be spent on the Baltic Sea."

HTC-Columbia sport director, Rolf Aldag, is in the unenviable position of dealing with the two sprinters and refuses to make waves with the following remark: "We should not concern ourselves with what happens in July, first we have the Giro d'Italia."

Cavendish will start next in Monday's Volta a Catalunya while Greipel will toe the line twice before taking the start in May's Giro d'Italia: first on April 3rd at the Rund um Köln then again at the Rund um den Finanzplatz in Frankfurt on May 1st.


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