By Antonio J. Salmerón
Promising Spanish Astana rider, Luis León Sánchez, has come to an unexpected appointment in his intensive 2006 calendar, mainly because his frustrating experience in the last Tour of France. Leon Sanchez talked to El Faro de Murcia, and assured that he went into the Vuelta feeling optimistic: "I am really very tired and punished psychologically, mainly, because I have trained very hard without competing," he said. "On the other hand, I get here in better condition than I hoped."
But, is Astana really ready for the Vuelta? "We look ahead with optimism, trying to leave all that happened behind us, and focusing on our work. We have a solid and experienced leader, Alexandre Vinokourov, and we count on an exceptional team both on the human and technical level."
Asked what he personally aspired to do in this Vuelta, León Sánchez replied, "I want to play a satisfactory role in this Vuelta, but I have to work as well as possible for Vinokourov. We could only compete in the Tour of Germany until now, whereas the majority of our rivals have done the Giro or the Tour. Everything will depend on how I feel from day to day." León Sánchez considered the first week as "very hard" and said it could well "decide the general classification."