Friday, August 10, 2007

Big Jens Voigt Takes On Tour Of Germany

One of Team CSC's greatest victories in 2006 was by Jens Voigt, when he won the Deutschland Tour after no less than three stage wins – one more spectacular than the other. Now it is time for "Jensie" to defend his title, when this year's edition of the Deutschland Tour kicks off on Friday.

A while back Jens warned that it would be a lot harder for him to win this one, because the mountains are bigger and tougher in this year's route. During a chat on the Team CSC Official Fan Club website Voigt explained:

"They've included this gigantic mountain - the toughest climb in the entire ProTour calendar – so unfortunately I've gotta say that my chances are somewhat limited."

But this was before Voigt showed such great form during Tour de France, where he finished among the top-30 after several brilliant performances along the way – some of these in the mountain stages. And Voigt is a modest guy so it is not entirely unthinkable that we will be able to find him among the main contenders for the yellow jersey again.

However Voigt is not the only possible contender in Team CSC's line-up, which is both aimed at a good overall result as well as a stage win or two. Actually it will be a very all-round group starting on Friday.

Among others Bobby Julich is said to be in great shape and if this is the case both he and Andy Schleck might be able to mingle in the battle for a podium spot. However Schleck has only just started building up his form ahead of races like Giro di Lombardia later on in the season.

During Dauphiné Libéré Volodymir Gustov also showed, what a great help he can be to guys like Voigt on the climbs and this also goes for young Chris Anker Sørensen – a lot of you probably remember his fantastic 14th place on Mont Ventoux in Dauphiné Libéré. Chris Anker has also emerged from the training camp in July in top form.

And finally Alexandr Kolobnev has done well recently with his fifth place in Tour de la Region Wallonne and Fabian Cancellara – well, what can you say about this guy – he is capable of anything and you never quite know, what he will come up with.

So it is more or less a given that Team CSC has to be among the favorites in the team time trial, which is the second stage.

"We have a very strong line-up and we've got high expectations for the team time trial. We're hoping it will give Jens a good set-off for the rest of the race. And then we'll have to wait and see in fifth stage, when we reach that dreaded mountain, but Jens has come out of the Tour in fantastic shape and he did well in many of the mountains during the Tour so maybe he'll be able to make a repeat performance, who knows?" says sports director Kim Andersen.

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