Dmitriy Muravyev: I’m not riding the Tour for myself

    • Filled in News in English 2 Июль 2010 в 12:11, author: Editor
    • Views: 12 125.

    Photo: (c)

    - First of all, on behalf of all cycling fans in Kazakhstan and your supporters, congratulations on your Tour de France selection, we’ll be very happy to see you there!

    - Thank you.

    - And the first question, a common one maybe; how are you feeling, are you ready for the three-week marathon, what’s the mood in RadioShack?

    - The mood is - to work just like in two previous Grand tours - the 2008 Vuelta and the 2009 Tour de France. So that the captains and the directors are happy; ready for hard work. I hope I am. I was preparing for the Tour since December, and I just rode 14 races in the first half of the year, while other riders rode at least 30.

    - What do you think about Lance Armstrong’s form? Although he said in his interviews that he’s ready and that he’s in good form, but he didn’t rate his winning chances too high. What do you think about that? After all RadioShack’s roster looks like the strongest one.

    - I think making the best possible result will be our goal, then we’ll see. We have three riders who were standing on the Tour de France podium.

    - Was your Tour participation guaranteed since signing the contract (we all remember your work during the last TdF)? Or you had to go through the selection process?

    - There was a selection. There were 15 riders in the beginning, I think it was difficult to make the choice. Everyone in that list could work well. But I think, the directors and Lance want a team, that has Grand Tour experience. I had an inkling that I might be making into the roster, when I was asked to ride Tour of California, although it wasn’t in my scheldule. Lance and Levi rode there.

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    - By the way, this year Leipheimer doesn’t perform in the first half of the season as good as before, is it due to new Tour preparation program, is he trying to peak in the third week? Because at Tour de Suisse he lost to both Kloden and Lance.

    - I think, it is because he wanted to win the Tour of California, which was rescheduled from February to May.

    - But he unexpectedly lost to Michael Rogers there, I was really surprised when I was watching the race. One more question. Many experts and fans think that the cobble stage during the first week will be crucial. considering your cobbled classics experience do you think some favourites might lose a lot there? Or will all the GT contenders leave it for the mountains? Will RadioShack try to attack on this stage, because of all the favourites Lance is the best on pave.

    - I think the first week will be as hard as the first week at the Giro. I saw the profiles of the first five stages. I know them very well, They’ll be windy with some steep hills and cobbles. Every day will be a challenge and all the contenders know that, so they will be preparing to fight. On the cobble stage I think domestiques will do the job!

    - So if they work well, there will be no big gaps? Or will they?

    - Both. I think there will be gaps if there’s wind. If domestiques don’t bring the leaders to the front, it’s very possible, that some rider might make a gap in the peloton on the cobbles. And then they’ll have to catch him on their own, which is very difficult on narrow roads.

    Photo: (c)

    - That’s what a lot of Contador’s fans are afraid of, because he doesn’t like plains, winds and especially cobbles. You take care on the narrow roads!

    - I’m not riding the Tour for myself, I’m riding for Lance, I think that’s why Contador wanted me to stay with the team. Because I give my 100 percent during a race, for the team’s sake.

    - We know. Although sometimes we’d like to watch you ride for yourself. But in general, who do you think is the main contender - Contador or Lance? Last year’s results seem to say it’s Conta, but it’s been a year... who’s better? Or is there someone else, like Ivan Basso?

    - The problem of the fans of the team Astana is that to them Radioshak is like a red rag to a bull! There are a lot of other riders who can win. They shouldn’t be underappreciated!

    - Yeah, I’ve seen that kind of “fans” and I know about the last year’s situation - a lot of unpleasant words were said about the Shack. This is professional sport, and riders’ and teams’ choice should be respected. But unfortunately some unpleasant things were said by some “fans” even about you. By the way, about Radioshack: I’ve heard a lot and I've read on some messageboards that Armstrong doesn’t treat his domestiques well (I don’t know where do these rumours come from)?

    - That why they’re called rumours. He’s always encouraged his domestiques. Financially! He always says thank you for the work.

    - So it’s very possible that four weeks later he will say thank you to you for his victory. Good luck, thank you for your time! Kazakhstan supports you!

    - God knows who wins. I hope the strongest will win. Thanks to all my fans, to those who really support me, like Yermek, for example. Good luck all!

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