There were mixed, but generally positive feelings in the Liberty Seguros-Würth camp after the Paris-Nice prologue, where Alberto Contador finished 7th and defending champion Jörg Jaksche 20th. Being the first ProTour event, Paris-Nice is a big goal for Manolo Saiz's team, but it seems that it will have its work cut out to topple CSC.
"I had good feelings in the race, although at certain times I didn't quite have the power to push the gear that I wanted," said Contador, "[I was] good enough. I'm very satisfied with the time trial that I have done, but it is necessary to consider that it was only four kilometres and you can't draw too many conclusions."
The best thing, according to Contador, "is to be ahead, but for the time being it's not very important. I had good feelings in Valencia and here, and now it will be necessary to see if things are OK, because this is a very important race and I have to go day by day."
Jaksche lost 8 seconds to finish 20th, and admitted that he was "not that great, except at the start. It's difficult to explain. Today's time is not important. There is still a lot of ground to cover and we have to see what happens."
Team manager Manolo Saiz summed things up, saying, " The whole team has been good, only it was necessary for us to be extraordinary. It has been a typical time trial of Paris-Nice, but we have to admit that those who have beaten us are all extraordinary riders."
Saiz and Liberty will now work towards winning back time via bonus seconds in the intermediate and finishing sprints.