Ullrich: "I believe in myself"

Jan Ullrich is confident for the Tour de France. In a press conference at the Tour de Suisse, where...

Jan Ullrich is confident for the Tour de France. In a press conference at the Tour de Suisse, where the German still leads the general classification after stage five, Ullrich said that he was happy with his current form. "I was very satisfied with my result at the time trial [which he won - ed.]. I will not let go of the jersey voluntarily. But the most important thing is that the team doesn't have to work too hard now. The race might get decided only on the last day.

"I've trained a lot and I've trained hard," he continued with a perspective on the next Tour de France, where the German will get his last chance of beating Lance Armstrong. "I believe in myself. I don't know if there's a specific recipe [to beat Armstrong - ed.] - you just have to be in good shape. And I've worked a lot to get in shape."

Another very fit T-Mobile rider could also be a threat to the Texan in July: Alexandre Vinokourov "I wouldn't have any problems riding for 'Vino' if he's the strongest in our team. If that's the case, then the others should be afraid! It will life more difficult for our rivals." Ullrich, who was happy for his Kazakh teammate when Vinokourov won the Dauphiné Libéré stage to Mont Ventoux, smiled when he said that "Lance isn't doing too bad either". As to the reports that Discovery Channel made a contract offer to Vinokourov, Ullrich replied briefly, "Vino is one of the best riders in the world. It's normal that Lance's team is interested."

With regard to further Tour de France contenders in July 2005, the 'Kaiser' said, "the Spanish are getting in shape, they'll be strong. And there can always be surprises, riders that you don't count on now." In the meantime, he is still leading the Tour de Suisse, which will move into the mountains today in stage six from Bürglen to Arosa.

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