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Niermann still waiting

Grischa Niermann ended the Dauphiné Libéré in 51st place, but the important thing to him was that he stayed at the side of Rabobank captain Denis Menchov until the end. His job in the race was to support his captain in the mountains as long as possible.

"If I qualify for the Tour de France then I won't budge from Menchov's side for three weeks," the German rider wrote on his website, He still has to wait, though, to find out whether he is on the Tour squad or not, since the final nomination of nine riders won't be announced until after the Tour de Suisse. "I simply hope to be at the start of the race for the sixth time."

If he does not make the team, then "naturally I would be disappointed," but Niermann has been around long enough to know that "even without a Tour start, life goes on. Then I would look to the Deutschland Tour and the Vuelta."

Meanwhile, he is leaving nothing to chance and using every opportunity. "I went directly from the Dauphiné to altitude training in Livigno. I will train here in the mountains for 10 days and hope that it gives me an extra boost."

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