Fränk Schleck is still recovering from surgery to the broken collarbone he sustained in La Fleche Wallonne but the 36-year-old is focused on returning to form this July at the Tour de France.
Schleck provided an update on his injury and recovery via the Trek-Segafredo team website, explaining why his break required surgery.
"The crash in Fleche broke my collarbone in three pieces, and splits of the bone had to be removed so there is quite a bit of bone missing," Schleck said of the accident. "Two weeks ago we did the surgery and fixed the collarbone with a plate and 10 screws. So in 5 to 7 days I will have more X-rays to see if the bone has made progress and started the calcification."
"It is still painful and I have not reached the full range of movement but I am back on the bike with training adapted to the pain. When I will start back to full training is too early to say. I am in contact with the team's medical staff and we'll know more after the next examination, but I am confident I will be back to full training soon. The cut from surgery is healing well."
Schleck added that he can laugh at his current situation, explaining that having broken his left-collarbone in 2010, "I can believe I am again symmetrical and in total balance again - I'll be stronger when I come back!"
Besides national road titles, Schleck won his first race in four years at the 2015 Vuelta a Espana to spur him on for a top-ten result at the Tour as he told Cyclingnews. Despite a mixed start to the season with 14th overall at the Volta ao Algarve his best result yet, Schleck is confident he can deliver for the team in July.
"If I can say one thing about myself it's that I am very hard on myself and I will not let this crash change anything of my passion and love of cycling. I am focused on the Tour de France and I want to get to the Tour in high shape - no excuses. The team can rely on me that we will do a great Tour," said Schleck who has finished top-five at the French Grand Tour in three occasions.
Felline recovering from surgery
Trek-Segafredo also lost Fabio Felline to injury in the Ardennes with the Italian crashing in the neutral zone of Amstel Gold Race, breaking his nose and fracturing his skull. Felline is yet to get back on the bike having undergone several surgeries as he explained.
"I had a complicated operation on my nose last Tuesday that went very well and the doctor was happy with the results. Until then my respiration was not very good, the bones needed to be adjusted into a good position," said Felline. "On the 16th I will have another examination for nose, and also for the neck [fracture at the base of the skull]. If all is okay and everything continues to be stable, then maybe I can start on the rollers. So in one week I will know more."
Felline was suffering from infection earlier in the season before his Amstel Gold Race crash.
"First dealing with the infection for three weeks, and I was just starting to feel good again after that, and now this. It was very hard for me at first. Sometimes I ask myself why all these bad things have to happen in one period," said Felline. "But this is the life – everything does not always happen the way you want; it's not perfect. A lot of people are saying to me when I will come back I will be stronger. And now I understand what they mean: You pass through these difficult times and it makes you mentally stronger."
Like teammate Schleck, Felline is also targeting a return to racing in July but will assess his goals once he is able to turn the pedals.
"I want to come back if possible this summer – July is what I hope, and I feel this is really possible. If I have good feedback in a week, then I will start back with some stationary training," he added.
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