Sørensen focused despite Contador's doping case
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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sørensen focused despite Contador's doping case

by Samuel Morrison at 5:01 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
'No matter what, I will head to the Tour de France 100 percent prepared'

Danish cyclist Chris Anker Sørensen will be ready for the Tour de France this July regardless Alberto Contador's doping case.

"This change does not really matter to me. No matter what, I will head to the Tour de France 100 per cent prepared," he told Ritzau.

"Whether it is to race for Alberto, or whether it is to do something else entirely, we'll see."

Saxo Bank team manager, Bjarne Riis hired Spaniard Contador in August to replace Fränk and Andy Schleck. In September, the International Cycling Union (UCI) revealed that Contador failed a doping test for Clenbuterol on the way to his third Tour de France in July.

Contador faces a likely suspension of one to two years and the loss of his third Tour title. He maintains his innocence. He blames the result on eating a contaminated steak that his Astana team bought in Irún, Spain.

"I have never doped myself, never. I can say loud and clear, with my head held high. I consider myself as an example of a clean sportsman," said Contador in a press conference Friday. "I find it, therefore, very difficult to handle the things that are said about me."

Sørensen won the mountain stage to Monte Terminillo at the Giro d'Italia and helped former team-mate Andy Schleck finish second at the Tour de France last year. Even with Contador preparing to face the press Friday at Saxo Bank's hotel in Spain, Sørensen and his team-mates continued to train.

"You just focus on your own training for the season and take it as it comes. I always race with the idea that I focus on what I need to do," said Sørensen.

"It's what you have to do. You must not think of what else happens, it could also be that the whole team suddenly becomes sick. Cycling is very variable."

Contador left the team training camp to be with his friends and family at his home near Madrid. The camp may have been Contador's last time to ride with the team if the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) delivers a likely ban.

Sørensen remains focused, though.

"Of course we are affected by the situation. He's a team-mate, and we can understand his frustration, for it is a special situation. On the other hand, I could feel when we trained today that we were a tight group," said Sørensen.

"We have a great camp here, a good atmosphere and the riders are kept focus on what they should: Riding their bike and focused 100 percent on the upcoming season. It's nice to see."

Sørensen's first goal is Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April and then he wants to be ready for the Tour de France.


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