Okay, I'm not at my best but it feels so good to be back in the bunch and racing again. You don't know how hard it has been over the last few months as my teammates and rivals have raced and I've been going from specialist to specialist in a bid to find a fix for my knee. I wouldn't go so far as calling it depressing but it's certainly been tough, and when I picked up this niggle in January I had no idea it would take so long to clear up.
But now I'm back and racing again. My first race of the year was Giro del Friuli last week and although I didn't finish I managed to make it into a break with Filippo Pozzato and Franco Pellizotti.
And it seems my last blog on Cyclingnews caused a bit of a storm with Pippo unaware of the term 'metrosexual'. So just so you all know, he's not any type of sexual other than hetero and thanks to Google he now knows what metrosexual means. Let's just say that chatting in the break was a lot of fun that day.
Back to racing, and it's a step in the right direction for my season and the Classics campaign is back on. I raced again the Strade Bianchi and although I didn't finish that race either, I was happy with my performance.
It's strange being back in the peloton though. New teams, Sky and Radioshack have settled and all these riders are in their new kits and racing on different bikes. It's funny how so many riders come out with the same post-transfer quotes though. Like, "my new team is amazing; It's never been so organised; My old director never knew I existed; In my old team everyone called me fat," but seriously everyone comes out with the same quotes.
I guess it's a bit like going from a Porsche to a Ferrari - you're not going to bitch about either of them and you're certainly not going to lose face and say the Ferrari isn't good.
It leads me onto the next topic and one which I know you're all eager to hear about - my team situation for 2011.
I know you'll want to hear juicy gossip stories but the truth is that's there's no news and nothing to confirm. Obviously Frank and I have had offers from other teams but it's no secret that we're out of contract at the end of the year and with Saxo Bank pulling out, other teams are looking to sign us.
However I'm still convinced that Bjarne will come up with the goods and find a new sponsor and make us an offer to stay. I'm close to him, I love my team and my teammates and I hope that things work out for the best but we'll discuss things when the Tour is finished.
Sometimes it makes me smile when I read some of the stories in the press. Like last year when I was photographed talking to Lance Armstrong at the Tour. Of course the obvious conclusion one journalist arrived at was that we were negotiating on riding for Radioshack. Truth is we were talking about the race.
So in the next few months you'll probably read a lot more news items about Frank and I signing for this team or that team. In fact talking to Pippo in the bunch might have to go on hold, otherwise people will assume we'll be riding at Katusha next year.
I have a lot of friends here at Saxo Bank and we're a special team that work so hard for each other. You can never predict the future but I hope we find something. And I say we because as I've said before Frank and I will never race on different teams.
Back to the here and now and I'm getting ready for the start of stage 1 of Tirenno. By the time you read this I'll hopefully be safe over the line and in one piece.
There's still plenty of the season left to race and I'm looking forward to it. So, don't worry about me, I'll be in peak condition for the Classics and then the Tour.
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