Life from an outsider's perspective…

Lance Armstrong & Alberto Contador will train together in Tenerife! Team Astana in Tenerife this November!

Lance Armstrong & Alberto Contador ride together in the Astana training camp in Tenerife.Alberto Contador, winner of this season’s Giro de Italia and Vuelta a España confirmed his continuation with team Astana next season alongside his American team mate Lance Armstrong. Contador assured that the Astana team will prepare in Tenerife at the end of November 2008.

“I’ve been analysing the diferent situations and thinking about alternatives since half way through the Vuelta and after meeting with my director, Johan Bruyneel, and having spoken of the last few months, we have resolved whatever type of tension between us”, said Contador.

Astana Team Logo. Armstrong to train alongside Contador in Tenerife in preparation for the 2009 cycling season.“We have already spoken about what my schedule will be in the next season and consequently, I can affirm that I will be in team Astana next year”, added the spanish rider. “I have taken the decision to keep going because I think that it’s more certain, since I can count on a great group of trusting men around me who have done their best with me in each race and that should permit me to keep fighting for victory with the best guarantee”, explained Contador.

Team Astana training in Tenerife. (AP Photo/Arturo Rodriguez)The arrival of Armstrong has been the main cause of friction. “I think that everything is going to perform much better than what it appeared to in the beginning. If each one of have our own agenda there won’t be any type of problem or inconvenience. For me it’s a pleasure to coincide within the same team as a great racer who I’ve always admired”, he said. “It’s also true that I am ambitious and when he established that he wanted to win his 8th tour, I thought that co-existence would be complicated, but I think that with a good team management there won’t be problems in France. For the rest of the year, it doesn’t inconvenience me”, he continued.

Lance Armstrong trains in Tenerife, December 1st. AP Photo/Arturo RodriguezAlberto Contador is still finalysing his race calendar for the next season. What seems decided is that he will race the Tour in the biggest three weejs. “My idea is to race only in the Tour at 100%, because this year it’s hard for me to recover from the strength of the Giro and the Vuelta”, he assured. Contador still hasn’t spoken directly with Armstrong. “We have a training camp in Tenerife at the end of November and there we will speak with our directors to avoid any type of arguments, because perhaps there has been an excessive expectation with all this, even though it is understandable”, he said.


“He estado analizando las diferentes situaciones y alternativas planteadas desde mediados de la Vuelta a España y, tras reunirme con mi director, Johan Bruyneel, y de haber hablado de lo sucedido estos últimos meses hemos resuelto cualquier tipo de tensión entre nosotros”, dijo Contador.

“Ya hemos hablado de cuál será mi calendario en la próxima temporada y, como consecuencia, puedo afirmar que el año próximo seguiré en el equipo Astana”, añadió el corredor español. “He tomado la decisión de seguir porque creo que es lo más acertado, ya que aquí cuento con un gran grupo de hombres de confianza a mí alrededor, que se han volcado conmigo en cada carrera y esto debe permitirme seguir luchando por las victorias con las mejores garantías”, explicó Contador en su comunicado.

“Creo que todo se va a desarrollar mucho mejor de lo que parecía en un principio. Si cada uno hacemos nuestro calendario no habrá ningún tipo de problema ni inconveniente. Para mí es un placer coincidir en el mismo equipo con un corredor que siempre he admirado”, dijo el madrileño. “También es cierto que soy ambicioso y cuando se planteó que quería ganar su octavo Tour, pensé que sería complicada la coexistencia, pero creo que con una buena dirección del equipo no habrá problemas en Francia. En cuanto al resto del año, no tengo ningún inconveniente”, siguió.

Alberto Contador todavía está cerrando su calendario de pruebas para la próxima temporada. Lo que parece decidido es que sólo correrá el Tour de entre las grandes de tres semanas. “Mi idea es correr sólo el Tour al cien por cien, porque este año me está costando recuperarme del esfuerzo del Giro y la Vuelta”, aseguró. Contador todavía no ha hablado directamente con Armstrong. “Tenemos prevista una concentración en Tenerife a finales de noviembre y allí hablaremos con nuestros directores para evitar cualquier tipo de polémicas, porque quizás ha habido excesiva expectación con todo esto, aunque es comprensible”, dijo.

Meanwhile, Armstrong said:
“While there has been a fair bit of tension and numerous disagreements with the Tour and its organizers, I am well aware that there is new leadership at ASO and I look forward to upcoming conversations and to a mutually beneficial future together. Whether it’s promoting the Livestrong global cancer campaign or making the biggest bike race in the world the gem that it deserves to be, I look forward to next year. I would also like to recognize the UCI and commend them for their aggressive stance against doping, a stance that is unmatched in all of world sport.”

Team Astana in Tenerife. Photo from Reuters Pictures.“Lastly, as to the leadership of the Astana team in 2009. It is illogical to pre-select a leader for any race in October of the previous year. We are blessed at Astana to have the strongest team in the world and I look forward to riding with all of these great riders. I have been around long enough to know that cycling is a team sport and I am fully committed to supporting the strongest rider in any race. Whether that’s me, Alberto Contador, Levi Leipheimer, or Andreas Kloden.”

“We’ll abide by the same code that I do: cycling is team sport, while we’d all like to win,” he said.

Lance Armstrong training in Tenerife. Photo from Getty Images by AFP/Getty Images“If you’ve been away for three or four years, it would be silly for anybody to think I could pick up where I left off,” Armstrong told The Associated Press in a telephone interview from Tenerife in the Canary Islands where Astana is training. “I can tell you I feel better than ever, I feel stronger than ever on Dec. 1. How that translates to racing, we’ll have to see. Mentally, in terms of motivation, this feels like 1998-1999 to me.”

Lance Armstrong Surfing in Tenerife. Photo courtesy of www.astana-cyclingteam.com.The Astana team enjoyed a surfing lesson with K16 Surf School after their first bike training session. Where else in Europe can you go ride to 2300m and then surf on the same day at this time of year, eh?

One Response to “Lance Armstrong & Alberto Contador will train together in Tenerife! Team Astana in Tenerife this November!”

  1. The latest news is that Lance started training yesterday based around Arona and finished the day with some surfing lessons… I have pharyngitis, so I’m not likely to get any of my own spy photos…

Discussion Area - Leave a Comment