Lance Armstrong (Discovery Channel) returned to racing in 2005 with a low key performance in the prologue of Paris-Nice, finishing in 140th place out of 168 riders. The American, who has not made a goal of doing well in Paris-Nice, grinned wryly as he quipped that it was, "probably the worst time trial of my life...I've achieved my first goal. I survived the prologue. I'll try to stay with the peloton in the next few days. I think that it will be hard to follow them, but I hope to reach Nice."
Armstrong admitted that the cold, jetlag, and most importantly, lack of racing kilometres affected him today. "Man I was cold today - I froze!" he was quoted by Sportwereld as saying. "This was extremely hard...My condition is really nothing special. I've actually never stopped training, but I'm behind compared with other years. I stayed a lot longer in the US and I only came back to Girona on Thursday. The jetlag is still in the legs. I'm still a bit too heavy...
"From now on, it really starts for me and I am 100 percent ready to go to work...everyone knows my objective this year (Tour de France) so for now (at Paris-Nice) I'm just here to get used the rhythm of racing and build my strength. This is pure preparation. Hey guys, these were my first four racing kilometres!"
Armstrong's did have some positive assessments of his ride, saying, "I felt pretty good today and my position on the bike was good."
The six-time Tour champ also hinted to French TV at the possibility of riding Paris-Roubaix this year, but said he would leave that decision up to team manager Johan Bruyneel.