According to older brother Fränk, Andy Schleck is even more of a danger to Alberto Contador now that the Saxo Bank rider lost his yellow jersey on stage 15 of the Tour de France.
Andy Schleck was on the attack when he suffered an ill-timed mechanical with his chain on the final slopes of the Port de Balès. He was forced to stop and fix the problem as Contador, Samuel Sanchez and Denis Menchov distanced themselves from the Saxo Bank leader. Contador now leads Schleck by eight seconds in the overall, having turned around a 31 second deficit.
“Andy felt very strong and everyone could see that when he attacked. I don’t want to judge, Contador is a good guy but Armstrong won seven Tours and I remember him waiting for Ullrich and vice versa,” Fränk Schleck told Cyclingnews.
Unsurprisingly, older sibling Frank added that he would have waited for a rival if he had been in Contador’s shoes. “Of course it’s a race and I respect his decision and it was Alberto’s to make. Maybe he didn’t see it but I think they have radios. I would have waited.”
Both brothers spoke at the end of the stage on phone, Fränk revealing that one of the first thing Andy does is call his brother once he’s on the team bus. “He’s furious with the mistake, from the mechanical but he wont give up and he’s going to carry on fighting. There’s no way he’ll give up. In many ways he’s more dangerous now.”
Fränk, who crashed out of the race on stage three with a broken collarbone enjoyed his first day back on the bike on Monday, after a successful surgery last week. The Tour de Suisse winner was a potential threat to Contador coming into this year’s Tour but has now set his sights firmly on the Vuelta in September, a race he started but failed to finish last year.
“I’m improving. Today was the first time I’ve been back on the road and turning my legs. I cant’ get out of the saddle and I can only handle smooth roads as the collarbone is still hurting. It’s only been 12 days since the surgery,” he told Cyclingnews.
“It’s going to be another few weeks before I can think about racing again. It’s all day-by-day. For my shape and my body it’s good to have a three-week race in you. I’ll go for the Vuelta.”