Once a domestique with plenty of promise, Fränk Schleck's name is now being cast as one of the...
The hopeful helper
Once a domestique with plenty of promise, Fränk Schleck's name is now being cast as one of the future stars of cycling. Björn Scheele finds out a little more about the friendly-faced Luxembourger, who achieved his crowning moment at this year's Amstel Gold.
After winning the 2006 Amstel Gold Race, 26 year-old Fränk Schleck proved that he is slowly but surely becoming one of the really big names in cycling.
Last year Schleck fought for Ivan Basso's victory at the Giro d'Italia. But on the legendary Stelvio stage, Captain Basso was weaker than expected. Schleck waited for him and prioritised his team's ambitions over his own personal interests. Many will wonder how it felt knowing that he was stronger than Basso that day.
"The whole team suffered with Ivan," he says. "It had been a long day and we were sitting on our bikes for eight hours. You just have to stay with a rider like Ivan and support him one hundred percent, on good and on bad days. It was a truly terrible day, but we showed that we are the best team in the world - not only because we ride fast!
"We proved that we are an extraordinarily homogenous team and that friendship means a lot for us. Especially Ivan, who's very sensitive to these things, saw that we were standing right behind him." Schleck admits that there are people who have said he should have tried to get something out of it for himself. But he would have never even thought of that and is deeply convinced he and his team-mates did the right thing.
Click here for the full interview.
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