No Valverde or Schleck for Romandie

Two big names will be missing from the Tour de Romandie which starts today with a 3.5km prologue...

Two big names will be missing from the Tour de Romandie which starts today with a 3.5km prologue through the streets of Fribourg, Switzerland. Caisse d'Epargne's Alejandro Valverde has cancelled his appearance, saying he wanted to prepare for the Tour de France, while CSC's Frank Schleck is taking time off to recover from a cracked vertebra sustained in the Amstel Gold Race.

"I had constant back pain and therefore had x-rays on Saturday," Schleck explained to Sportinformation Zürich. "That showed that a vertebra was cracked. But I wanted to ride Liège-Bastogne-Liège on Sunday anyway."

Despite his injury, the Luxembourger finished third in Liège behind Valverde and Danilo Di Luca.

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