QuickStep's Patrick Lefevere still irritated about Stijn Devolder
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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

QuickStep's Patrick Lefevere still irritated about Stijn Devolder

by Jered Gruber at 11:44 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Belgian manager has never tired complaining about underachieving Belgian champion

The three year relationship between Stijn Devolder and Patrick Lefevere is thankfully coming to an end in the near future. The famed QuickStep manager has never been completely happy with his sometimes superstar rider, and more often than not, it seems Devolder has been a thorn in his side. The latest grumblings from Patrick Lefevere about his favorite subject to grumble about, Stijn Devolder, seem a lot like those we've seen and heard for years now.

"In Stijn Devolder, I have always said that he is good in spring and autumn, not in between. But now there is no autumn," said the manager who has never been afraid to give his riders a public tongue lashing in an interview with De Morgen.

The QuickStep boss is angry about Devolder's latest bit of news - he won't take part in the Australian World Championships. It seems to be just another in a long series of disappointments for Lefevere, who put huge hopes on the mercurial riders, but only saw sparing returns.

"I should watch what I say, but this season was just not good enough. In three years with QuickStep, he has won the Tour of Flanders twice and the Belgian Championships twice, but I expected more of him. Who knows if he can do even more if he gets his head straight…"

Even though Devolder would be riding the Worlds in national colors, Lefevere sees the World Championships as a further opportunity for his riders to gain acclaim for both the team and its sponsors, and so it's less than surprising that his grumbles about the latest news are two-fold.

"That's just one less rider to gain publicity in Australia," spewed arguably the most successful Classics manager in history. Even more irritating for Lefevere though was how he found out: "I had to read the news in the papers. Who pays him? The team or the press?"

Unfortunately for the entertaining news that comes from the strained relationship between the Belgian champion and Lefevere, Devolder will finally be leaving the confines of QuickStep next season. The rider who has spent the past three seasons with the Belgian juggernaut is moving to Vacansoleil in 2011.

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