Armstrong's first attack countered by Hernández

Lance Armstrong is still a few days away from his comeback in the Tour Down Under, but in training he already put on the back burner. During a five-hour ride, Armstrong stormed up Willunga Hill, but one man was able to match the Texan: Jesús Hernández. Hernández is the regular training partner of Alberto Contador and Armstrong was full of praise of Hernández's climbing abilities, according to La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"He is really strong," Armstrong said about his Astana teammate. The young Hernández has already turned heads at the training camp in Tenerife, when Johan Bruyneel gave the green light on the difficult climb of Masca. Hernández dropped everyone, including Armstrong and Leipheimer.

Hernández will be tasked with domestique work in Autralia, but he could well be the surprise of the year in the Kazakh team.

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