Andy Schleck wants happiness. Happy doesn’t win the Tour.
Andy just wants to have a good time, people!
He just wants to ride Tour de France and enjoy the scenery, be happy on his bike, up the mountains, down the backside, smile for the fans, have a croissant or two.
Hey, why are Froome and Nibali so far ahead of me? This isn’t fun!
The guy who used to always finish second to Tour winner Alberto Contador just can’t say for sure if he’ll ever be on the podium again in Paris. “My dream is to win the Tour. Perhaps that isn’t possible. Who can say?”
Well, we appreciate Andy’s honesty but he’s supposedly back close to form after finishing 20th in the 2013 Tour. You’d think he could say with greater certainty if he can challenge Froome or Nibali or Quintana (if the Colombian rides). After all, Schleck rode up the Pyrenees and Alps for two weeks and got a good, close look at his adversaries.
All he’s willing to say is he wants to enjoy himself — which doesn’t sound like the driven, whatever-sacrifices-it-takes-approach required to win Le Grand Shindig. “Honestly, how could I be sure now about getting back up onto the podium. I only want to enjoy my cycling,” said Schleck the Younger. “That would be a very good feeling.”
Ask Chris Froome over at Sky — winning the Tour de France is a good feeling.
This kind of talk is always a reminder that Andy Schleck is a really nice guy — perhaps too nice to win the most demanding and brutal endurance event in sport. Froome is a killer, Nibali always looks to attack, Contador will stick the knife in whenever and wherever he sees a chance. Andy is a great buddy for a fishing trip.
Read his quotes in Le Quotidien and he almost sounds resigned. “The competition is perhaps stronger than it was four or five years ago. I simply want to go into the season feeling enthusiastic and motivated. And, inevitably, with Fränk at my side.”
Well, that sounds like fun, huh — riding the Tour with your brother? Sure does. But his expectations sound like Cat 1, not Cat 4. He’s not aiming too high or making any bold statements — not even a “top ten” prediction.
This is probably the kind of attitude that drove Johan Bruyneel nuts; the Belgian used to the hyper-competitive Armstrong who spent every waking moment looking for more edges over his rivals.
Well, Andy Schleck is no doubt happier. Bruyneel is long gone and his friend and mentor Kim Andersen will be directing him in the Tour next year. Brother Frank will once again be by his side, swapping jokes and following moves.
We’re happy to hear than Andy is happy. But when it comes to winning the Tour de France — still his dream according to Andy — happy sounds a little complacent, like a man already settling into the idea that the podium is too damn hard.
We want to see the unhappy Andy, the nasty, bad-ass, killer from Luxembourg. Where is that Andy or did he ever exist?