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Klöden happy to be back in action

T-Mobile's Andreas Klöden is happy to be back in the saddle again, having competed in the GP Chiasso and GP Lugano in Switzerland over the weekend. The German climber broke his hand in the Tour de France last July and had not raced since - so even though he didn't finish either race, Klöden was happy to get back into race rhythm.

"After a seven month break from racing, at first, it was an almost unfamiliar feeling to be riding in the peloton again," the 30 year-old said. "But that didn't last long and after only a few kilometres the joy of being there again gained the upper hand. Despite the cool and at times rainy weather, I was able to ride well and to test where I stand at the moment." Klöden, who finished the 2004 Tour de France second-placed behind Lance Armstrong, is now planning for his next appearance in the Italian ProTour race Tirenno-Adriatico, scheduled for March 8-14. Klöden will be one of T-Mobile's greatest assets in the 2006 Tour de France. "I am looking forward positively to this year and am 120 percent motivated," he concluded.

Courtesy of Susan Westemeyer

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