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Fränk Schleck says he's ready to race

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An unhappy Frank Schleck during the Giro d'Italia

An unhappy Frank Schleck during the Giro d'Italia (Image credit: AFP)
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Andy and Frank Schleck celebrate after the 2011 Tour de France

Andy and Frank Schleck celebrate after the 2011 Tour de France (Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Luxembourg champion Frank Schleck (Leopard Trek)

Luxembourg champion Frank Schleck (Leopard Trek) (Image credit: Isabelle Duchesne)

With his doping-related ban set to expire on July 14 Fränk Schleck has told Cyclingnews that he is ready and able to return to racing.

Schleck tested positive for the banned diuretic and masking agent Xipamide during last year’s Tour de France in an anti-doping control after stage 13, and received a 12 month ban.

“I’m fit and I’m training so I’ll be ready to step in,” he told Cyclingnews which contacted him on Wednesday.

Schleck would not set any date for his return though and would not talk about any of the speculation that has surrounded his future in recent weeks, with current team boss Flavio Becca reportedly contemplating firing the rider.

“We’ll see when that is,” Schleck said when asked about a possible racing return date.

 “I’m not going to talk about that now though. We’ll see. I’m training between four to six hours a day and I’m fit.”

When pressed on whether he has a contract for next year the former Tour de France podium finisher said, “I don’t want to talk about that, so please respect that.”

Last week it was confirmed that Trek had bought the RadioShack-Leopard WorldTour licence from Becca, and that the American bike firm would bankroll the team for the coming three years with Fabian Cancellara the first star name to commit his name to the project.

“I’m happy that the team has a sponsor,” Schleck told Cyclingnews.

Cyclingnews understands from a reliable source that Trek is currently renegotiating contracts with both Schleck brothers for the 2014 season.

While younger brother Andy continues to impress in the opening days of the Tour, Fränk has watched on from the sidelines and has tipped his brother to animate the race  in the mountains.

“They did a very good time trial yesterday and Andy looks pretty sharp. He’s been at the front and that looks good. It’s not easy being on the sidelines. If I’m not out on the bike then I’m watching,” he said.

“He has the experience and he knows how to climb and in a week he should be going even better.”

Daniel Benson is the Managing Editor at Cyclingnews. Based in the UK, he coordinates the global coverage for the website. Having joined Cyclingnews in April 2008, he has covered several Tour de France, the Spring Classics, and the London Olympic Games in 2012.

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