Schleck breaks up with Contador. A bromance sours.

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Schleck breaks up with Contador. A bromance sours.

Schleck. When is a hug not a hug?

The bromance is over.

It was a bitter Andy Schleck who announced today that his best-buddy relationship with Alberto Contador is finished. At issue, the phony warm hug that wasn’t.

“I have my arm on his shoulder, but I am not doing anything. It was his way of saying, look, we are friends,” said Schleck. According to the tour runner-up, that Tourmalet hug was staged by the Spaniard.

All men know these things: If another guy hugs you, you place your arm on his shoulder BUT you do not under any circumstances move it. This non-motion sends a clear signal: I’m not your pal.

Schleck admitted that as far as he’s concerned, Contador’s attack during Andy’s chain-crisis was the difference between winning and losing the Tour de France. “Without this incident, he wouldn’t have gotten away,” Schleck said. “I have regrets.”

The fake hug rankles the Luxemberger, the bromance is over and the knives are finally out. “He knows what I think of him,” said Schleck. “And he knows that if we find ourselves in the Tour, I won’t wait for mechanical trouble.”

The break-up comes as a surprise given Schleck’s stated friendship with Alberto Contador. What happened to the smiling photos together, Andy pleading with fans not to boo Contador for lack of sportsmanship, his offer to join his on a fishing trip with brother Frank. Schleck went out of his way to offer words of support as Contador deals with a possible doping suspension. Now, the party is over.

The Schleck-Contador man-pal relationship has been hotly debated ever since the Tour ended. Was Andy too passive, was the Spaniard playing psychological games, was it appropriate to be good friends with an arch rival? The combative Bernard Hinault thought is was embarrassing and ridiculous, Armstrong shook his head, cycling forums called Schleck a wimp. He needed to man-up if he planned to step up to first place.

Maybe it was simply time to cut ties. With rumors of Contador being handed a one year suspension as soon as tomorrow, perhaps Andy Schleck decided a bromance with a convicted rider was a bad idea.

When it came to winning the Tour de France, Hinault famously said “pas de cadeau.” No gifts. In this case, no hugs wither.

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  1. mbatley January 26, 2011 at 11:08 am - Reply

    I don't get Schleck…its a race for cripes sake! And he threw down the attack. He had the mechanical. Plus, Menchov had already countered. Is Contador supposed to just wait (for heavens knows how long) for Schleck to get his stuff fixed while Menchov (and the actual race) to go up the road? Stop whining! You attacked!

  2. Mick January 26, 2011 at 8:10 pm - Reply

    Jeez…Andy has selective memory…
    In the very least he owes Spartacus a reach around in the Roubiax showers this spring for grinding the race to a halt on the second stage whilst Andy was exhibiting the patented Schleck yard sale, & was gonna lose way more than 38sec before Spartacus intervened.
    I also enjoy more of Andy's selective memory on another note regarding the old unwritten rule "you don't attack the Yellow Jersey if they suffer a mechanical"… I recall Chavenal getting then dry humped, reamed, then fisted by Spartacus ( & Saxo) on stage 3 as they drilled him when he was having all sorts of mechanicals…WHILE WEARING THE F@CKIN YELLOW….I guess that rule now only applies to Luxembourgers … Was Chavenal a threat to win the Tour? Nada…but I can't stand the bullshit hypocrisy of this unwritten rule when it obviously is selectively applied…STFU & race ladies…

    • TwistedSpoke January 26, 2011 at 9:51 pm - Reply

      Luxembourg is a small country so I think there's an inferiority complex at work. Thanks for the wisdom, Matt

  3. yajiumadegomen January 26, 2011 at 9:15 pm - Reply

    in 2010 they were both on Specialized = they’re best friends!

    year turns now Andy rides Trek and Alberto not = no more friends!

    now Andy’s best friend is great Lance.

    • TwistedSpoke January 26, 2011 at 9:53 pm - Reply

      Interesting idea. A bike that brings them together and breaks them apart. Matt

  4. Sam February 3, 2011 at 9:55 am - Reply

    Who knows, it might have been in the Leopard equipment sponsorship cotract w/ Trek: Like who Lance likes who ride on Treks, and dislike who Lance dislikes who ride on anything else (especially Trek's biggest rival – Specialized)…sign on the dotted line please.

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