Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Armstrong: "Contador is too nervous"

Lance Armstrong took aim at the performance of his teammate Alberto Contador in an interview with French newspaper L'Equipe. "Contador has a lot to learn," Armstrong said. "He is the best in the world. The only negative thing, and I say this with great respect, is that he is too nervous. He is too strong to be so nervous. He has a good team manager and a strong team. Why get nervous?"

Armstrong's comments were in relation to Contador's performance in Paris-Nice last week where the Spaniard won two stages but lost the overall leader's jersey to Luis León Sánchez on stage seven.

The two last met in California for a team training camp, February 1 to 10, before Armstrong raced the Tour of California. They will race together for the first time at the Vuelta a Castilla y León, March 23 to 27.

Armstrong, who returned from retirement last fall, is building his form for the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France. Though he won seven editions of the Tour de France, it will be his first time to race the Giro d'Italia.

Armstrong added that he wants to peak for the first day of the Tour de France. This year's race starts with a 15-kilometre time trial in Monaco, which Armstrong previewed last week.

"I want to be strong in the Giro but not at my peak. I want to be at 90%. The goal is to do a good Giro, finishing in the top 10 or top 5 or top 3, if everything goes well."

This Saturday Armstrong will line up for his first race in Europe since the 2005 Tour de France at Milano-Sanremo.

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