Patrik Sinkewitz (ISD-Neri) is currently racing the Tour of Portugal, where he is lying in fourth place overall, 59 seconds adrift of race leader David Blanco (Palmeiras Resort-Tavira). After a rest day on Monday, there are five stages yet to race before the event finishes in Lisbon on Sunday, and the German team leader is motivated to try for a stage victory.
"But I know it will be difficult," Sinkewitz told Radsport-News. "Because of my good placing on the overall I probably won't be able to get into a break. And when there is an uphill finale, the Portuguese and Spanish riders here are extremely strong. It's the most important race in the season for the Portuguese."
The former T-Mobile rider, who won a stage in the Tour of Portugal last year, also wants to maintain his placing in the general classification. A 32.6km-long time trial on the penultimate day should help him. "The next few days will be tough. Amongst other difficulties, there is one mountain top finish where the road will rise for 28 kilometres. If I can hold on there, I will be able to take some time on my rivals in the time trial," he added.
Sinkewitz's team had planned for him to drop out of the race sometime this week in order to prepare for Italian one-day races like the Tre Valli Varesine, but now he will continue to the end. "My build-up was intended to make me competitive here in Portugal," said the 29-year-old. "I will ride as conservatively as possible and see what comes around. I'm under no pressure."
Sinkewitz was fired by the T-Mobile Team in 2007 after testing positive for testosterone. He received a one-year suspension after co-operating with authorities and giving detailed confessions. He made his come-back to racing with PSK Whirlpool-Author in 2009.