New Year Resolutions
1) To set up the pc on my bike (I bought it, but have never set up).
2) To stop studing and start working (Since 3 years I'm not working and my money are almost finished).
3) To go cycling every weekends (at least) and to improve my performances (I'm a 'schiappa' = not very good at).
4) To support my son who's going to start cycling (as a sport: he was born on the bike! - metaphoricly of course...).
5) To manage to organize a Schleck Party with the other fangirls.
6) To go to see the Tour de France... in France (some stages at least).
7) To find my true love (WOW) – Schleck or not, necessarily cyclist (amateur at least).
8) To buy a new helmet.
9) To bring my son to Venice.
10) To buy new cycling winter clothes.
[Number 7 is a resolution, not a dream: I'm determined to find him and I'm sure I'll do. Why I didn't devote myself to that before? Because I was too busy with changing the world. World is not changed but my life is a bit... shatter.]
[New year, new bikes! In 2009 Schlecks will ride Specialized.]


...they stole a lot of hearts [the mine included!]

[Thanks Marit for translation and good new year to you too!]
Frank and Andy
It was the year they stole a lot of hearts and got in to the absolute top. With their attacking way of racing, their infectious hunt for the yellow and white jersey in the Tour and especially because of the sincere mutual brother love. But their successes had two sides. The arrest of father Johnny Schleck in the Tour de France and the relation between Frank Schleck and Eufemiano Fuentes casted a slur on the Schlecks good name. On Curacao, the Schleckies looked back on a troubled year.

That the Schleck brothers are known on Curacao, can be seen after a performance of the Corona’s in the famous beach club Mambo beach. Suddenly, the brothers show up on the dance floor as two ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ in real Jack Sparrow clothing. For the third year in a row, the Luxembourgians are present at the Amstel Curacao Race. But they never looked forward to a relaxing holiday at the Lions Dive & Beach resort as much as they did this year. Since the Süddeutsche Zeitung came up with a story about a assumed link between Frank Schleck and doping doctor Fuentes, just before the World Championships in Varese, the oldest Schleck brother got the entire – already overheated – cycling world on his doorstep [freely translated; not really on his doorstep]. The German newspaper publicized a payment of 7000 euro’s from Frank to Fuentes. The CSC-racer suddenly wasn’t as sympathized as usual and he was linked to the name ‘Amigo de Birillo’, friend of Ivan Basso. Amstel- organizer Leo van Vliet eventually didn’t know what to do about it : “But I am no judge. I can’t tell when somebody did something wrong or not. There is no evidence that Frank used doping and even the UCI indicated that he is allowed to start everywhere. So...”

So around a week and a halve after the World Championships, Van Vliet called the brothers to ask how they were doing. “That phone call was a big relief for me” says Frank Schleck on Curacao. “Leo told us that we were still welcome. That he still had faith in us and didn’t judged us because of an article in a newspaper. His words meant a lot to me. I’ve been coming here for several years. Curacao already feels a bit like my second home. When we’re here, we know that we rode a good season. Otherwise you wouldn’t be invited. If I did something wrong, I wouldn’t want to be here. Then I wouldn’t dare to look Leo and his people in their eyes.” Even though the publication of the article, Frank and Andy stole many hearts this year. The way the brothers colored Liège-bastogne-Liège and the mountain stages in the Tour appealed to many people. Frank was the strongest in the Amstel Gold Race and in Liège, but couldn’t put the crown to his work with a first place because of his weak sprint. On La Redoute Andy opened the finale in la Doyenne and even attacked twice.
Andy: “My attacks were twofold. I got my own chance if the pursuiters started looking at each other. In the pursuit they had to do work where Frank could have profited from.” The Brothers eventually finished as third and fourth in Ans.
Their next peak was in the Tour de France. Frank conquered the yellow jersey on Prato Nevoso in the last week, to eventually pass it on to Carlos Sastre.
Frank: “You only realize how important your performances in the Tour were after you career. Now, you look forward, but only in the end you can look back realistically. Of course we talked about how special those days were, at the kitchen table. Andy and I are always together. We train together, hunt together and at the races, we even sleep in the same room. Even here, on a holiday, we are inseparable. It drives my girlfriend mad sometimes how much I call Andy when I am at home. We understand how unique it is to decide the finales of big races as brothers. We know exactly what our bodies can handle. Because we train together, I can tell by his face when he is worn out. The future is up to Andy of course, a great career is waiting for him. Next year, I’ll be 29 years old and he is only 23. But we also know that we are both not at our top yet. I am looking forward to the classics next year. We can win Amstel and Liege, we know that. And we can accomplish something in the Tour. I have looked at the new parcours and we both have a chance at the top five. Like I thought last year that I had a fair chance at winning the Tour. On Alpe d’Huez, we decided to play the card Sastre, but I was also very strong that day. I don’t want to detract anything form Carlos’ victory. I rode a weak last time trial, while his time trial was solid as a rock. He really showed that his was the rightful Tour-champion this year.” Carlos Sastre will be Frank’s competition next year.
Were the oldest brother rode in yellow in the mountain stages, the five year younger Andy rode by his side in the white jersey as the best young rider.
Andy: “I have seen in the Tour that my form improved in the third week. I noticed that I didn’t have the right rhythm in the Pyrenees. I had a bad day on Hautacam, what got worse because I hit the wall [cycling term]. Luckily I got over it. In the Alpes I was even surprised by myself how strong I was. Those performances convinced me that I can fight for a jersey of a different color in the Tour. Winning the tour is my big dream. After this season, I know that I am the guy of the future. My performances really made my confidence stronger. But I am not as far as Frank. I have to be careful with my body. I can want a lot, but I have five years less strength in my body than Frank,” Andy says realistically. With a second place in the General Classification and a white jersey in the Giro d’Italia and a white jersey in the Tour, people will expect a lot form the youngest Schleck. “Frank and I will always ride for each other”, with which he stresses the familial solidarity. “even though he is the oldest, Frank doesn’t have a problem with riding for me. And I have shown to have no problem with riding for Frank. The Tour is going to be my main goal. I am going to prepare better, train more for the time trial and I am going to explore mountain stages. Details will get more attention. I can’t tell if I can compete with Alberto Contador. He is the man to beat. But I have beaten him before. And why shouldn’t I do that in the Tour? If we are both at the start in top form, I am looking forward to battling against him.”
Andy praises the genes of his father Johnny: “We are lucky that we originally got some talent. We don’t have a lot of weight, but our muscles are tough. After heavy exercise, we recover quickly. And we don’t need extremely much training. Sometimes I think we don’t train enough.” But Frank contradicts that: “We do most of our trainings in the Luxemburgish and Belgian Ardennes. And you can count on it that we have a hard time. The hills are quite demanding. When we arrive on the first CSC-trainingcamp, we are always quite nervous when we hear how many hours are made by our teammates on the bike. But at the traditional test up the mountain, we are always with the best again.” Frank laughs.

A day after Frank was raced out of the yellow jersey on the ‘Dutch’ mountain (Alpe d’Huez), the Tour was stirred up because of the search through the car driven by father Johnny Schleck by the French gendarmerie, just after the start of the next stage. A police officer even pointed a gun at Schleck senior. “That night I was really angry and sad”, the older Schleck brother recalls. “That you are being stopped for an investigation is fine. But why do they put you on the side of the road, like you are the biggest criminal of France? Hundreds of times I have asked myself why they arrested him. And I still don’t get it. Even though sixteen other cars from the Tour were put on the side of the road that day.”
Andy: "I think the gendarmerie certainly has the right to stop anyone and search through their cars. When I saw the photos of my father and the pulled gun, I was scared. It was a shock. For a moment I was thinking to leave the Tour behind me and go home. My father is a good man… Such things shouldn’t happen to people like him. I called my father that evening and he told me that we should go on with the Tour. He said that the arrest was not a problem to him. Only after the Tour he admitted that it was quite scary.”

By a payment to Fuentes, Frank cam in the spotlight of critics at the World Chapionships in Varese. “I have a clear conscience and that is why I didn’t worry too much about it,” he defends. “I payed for a training program in 2006, that I would receive from Switzerland. I transferred it from my own bank account because I didn’t feel like I was doing …. [the article strangely ends here].
[Foto are from http://www.flickr.com/photos/lmalblas/ They have a funny expression in pic 1 and 2...]

I'm happy

Nothing special to post, but today I'm really happy. I know why. (Pic is probably from Facebook.)


Happy birthday, Rina! but Andy is a gift for me too.

[And you say this is
Fränk, but I'm not so sure. Other opinions?]
Definitively Fränk: I surrender !


Bye-bye 2008

Bye-bye! 2008 is almost over. It has been a quite good year for Schleck brothers!

Fränk finished 1 in the

Championnats du Luxembourg, 6 in the Tour de France (wearing the yellow jersey for 2 days), 2 in Amstel, 3 in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, 3 in Tour du Luxembourg...

Andy finished 5 in th Olympic Games, achieved the withe jersey and finished 12 in the Tour de France, 6 in the Tor de Suisse, 4 in Liège-Bastogne-Liège (1 in Curacao, we know!)...

Somethings could have gone [?] better and they had to face the stupidity of the press and the malice of the people. But they had the opportunty to test the unlimited love of their fangirls!

I'm sure that 2009 will be an happy and successful year for both.

...and I'm so sure because I love them too much.

[Pics are from Andy's facebook and... from http://www.schleck.lu/]


Chistmas lunch is a serious thing

Christmas lunch is over and... no, in spite of the similar tablecloth Fränk and Andy
weren't at my table. If they were there, staring at me with this expression, I think I wouldn't have sent to Mondorf this cheeky letter:

"Firenze, dicembre 2008
Ciao Fränk! Ciao Andy!
Sono Ilaria, da Firenze (Italia) e voglio farvi gli aguri per l'anno nuovo. Spero che sia un anno felice ricco di vittorie e di gioia per entrambi. Se voi siete felici, sono felice anch'io: vi amo disperatamente.
So che l'Italia vi piace: se passate da queste parti, venitemi a trovare! Ma intanto fatemi felice: scrivetemi due righe!
Con infinito amore
Guarda, Fränk: ti ho difeso su Bici Sport! [in allegato fotocopia degli articoli su BS di novembre e dicembre]"
I'm too shy about it, so don't ask me to translate.
These three little boys and girl are my son (the first at your left) and my nephew and niece. Yes, they were at my table for Christsmas lunch. We all were at my parents home.

And this is still my poor husband. I think I'm going to divorce...
Finally, this is Maggie's gift! Thanks again, dear blogmate: you know my taste.
In general, this Christmas day has been a good one. My little son handmade just for me a beads necklace and my brother's gift is a cycling rucksack, very nice.
In the evening we went to the cinema to see a good film: Happy go lucky.
Ehi, dear boys! how have you spent your Christmas day? and you, dear fangirls?


Stupid funny schleck-word jokes

- Cosa ci vuole per spedire una cartolina a Mondorf?
[What do you need to send a card to Mondorf?]
- Un Fränk-bollo!
[A 'Fränk-bollo': 'francobollo' in Italian means 'stamp']
- Mah.... francamente...
- E andymente?
[And andyly?]


Andy, just try [darkhaired girls]!

I'm glad to introduce another Italian fangirl by her praiseworthy translation work: Fede, My blog, from the “Tuttobiciweb” article of March 2008 written by Francesco Cerruti:
[Please note that in this article Andy and Fränk answer to some questions of mine. I congratulate Fränk for his good taste about girls and I think Andy is still too young to appreciate the superior beauty of darkhaired Italian girls - like me. But Andy, just try! I'm happy for their politic opinions too and off course for their love for Italy that I think is sincere.]
A face to face, frank and sincere, between two very strong riders, that make a whole nation, Luxembourg,dream. They are the Schleck brothers, young, beautiful [yes they are] and promising boys. Thanks to them, their parents, their team (Team Csc of Bjarne Riis), the fans[girls] from all over the world that have chosen them as the symbol of a cycling that is rapidly changing his face can dream [yes we do]. A face to face like the “Iene”’s ones (ndr; “Le Iene”-"The hyenas"-is an Italian tv programme) between two polite boys that want to be “hyenas” just when they’re riding on their bikes.
Name? F:Frank A:Andy
Date of birth? F: 15th April 1980 A: 10th June 1985
Ideal weight? F: 63 kg A: 65 kg
Height? F: 186 cm A: 186 cm
When did you start racing? F: I started racing when I was 13 year-old. I’ve been racing for the last 15 years. A: I started when I was 12 year-old,but in a serious way just when I was 16.
What have you done of important in the world of cycling until now? F: I’ve won an Amstel Gold Race and the stage of Alpe d’Huez in the 2006 Tour de France. I also came 3rd in the 2006 Pro Tour Ranking. A: Last year I came 2nd at the Giro d’Italia and 4th at the Tour of Lombardy. What are your goals for the 2008 season? F: The Ardenne’s classics, the Tour de France, the Olympics, the Worlds and the Tour of Lombardy. A: My schedule is nearly the same: Ardenne’s classics, Tour de France and Olympics. After that race I’ll decide if I’ll continue until the Tour of Lombardy or not.
What is your dream’s race? F: The Olympics. A: The Tour de France
The race that you hate? F: The Tour of Romandy, I don’t have any doubt about this. I really like Switzerland, but I’ve run that race for 3 times and for 3 times I had to retire because of a flu or of an injury. A: Don’t tell me about the GP of Cholet. I took part in that race for 2 times and for two times I’ve fallen. I’ve sworn it to myself: I’ll never run that race again.
Who are the most dangerous adversaries? F: Bettini, Rebellin and Valverde. A: Contador for the Grand Tours, Re­bellin for the classics. Valverde for both.
Your friends inside the peloton? F & A: The best are our teammates Cancellara, Kroon, Voigt and O’Gra­­dy, but they’re not the only ones.
Your enemies? F & A: We’ve got lots of adversaries but we haven’t got any enemy.
What kind of rider is your brother? F: We’re very similar, we both go very well in the classics and in the Grand Tours. A: He’s very intelligent in every kind of race, he can improve in time trials, the only thing for which he doesn’t have talent is the sprint.
Something of good about your brother’s character? F: He takes things more easily than I do, sometimes I think too much. A: I’m younger than him, but we’re very similar, so I think that when I’ll be his age I’ll be just like him, so I can’t say anything particularly good about his character.
A defect? F: He’s too untidy (chaotic). A: Sometimes he’s too much nervous.
Do you envy your brother something about cycling? F: No, we’re very similar. A: No. If he was fast, I would have liked to be as fast as him, but he’s not fast, so I don’t envy him anything.
Where do you live? F: In Mondorf, alone, where also Andy and my parents live. A: I still live with my parents in Mondorf, but I’ve just bought a house and I’m moving there.
What’s your favourite country? F: Luxembourg. I really like Italy, but if I lived there just like many of my teammates do, I would always feel like on a training camp. I’m happier when I’m near to my friends and, first of all, to my family. A: Luxembourg: I like the mentality and the way of living. But I put Italy at 2nd place. It’s a very fascinating country.
Have you got a girlfriend? F & A: No.
Do you prefer blonde or dark haired women? F: Dark haired. [Here I am!] A: Blonde.[Andy, just try!]
What’s your favourite dish? F: Pizza, chips and hamburgers. [Fränk, I can make an excellent pizza for you] A: Chips and hamburgers.
What’s your favourite sport? F: I like iceskating. A: Ice-hockey. I played it until I got 17 and I was in the young national team.
Hobbies? F: Hunting and fishing. A: Fishing more than hunting.
Who was your hero when you were a child? F: Johnny Cash and Ray Charles. A: James Dean.
Your hero in cycling? F: Bettini, Indurain & Rebellin. A: Miguel Indurain, without any doubt.
What type of car do you have? F: A Volkswagen Passat. A: A Volkswagen Touran.
Politics: Left or Right? F: Left. Our eldest brother, Steve,is a politician and he’s in the Socialist Luxembourgian Party. A: Left. [good boys]
Do you believe in God? F: Yes, I’m not a fanatic but I think people need to follow a trace during their life. A: I’m a believer and a practising.
What will you do when you give up cycling? F: I love animals. I don’t exclude to do something for them in the future. A: I hope I’ll have enough money in order to avoid doing a hard job. [!!] I'd like to live in a wood, inside nature [me too!], and I'd also like to travel around the world fishing. Fishing is one of my greatest passions.
What would you like to say to the italian fans? F: Sooner or later I’ll run the Giro d’Italia. I like your mentality, your passion, the big love you have for beautiful things and for cycling in particularly. A: I want to come back at the Giro, I’m sorry not to be able to come back already this year. However I’ll come back to win the Giro. In the end, a great “hello” to the italian fangirls. They’re very beautiful. Especially the blonde ones. [Hello Andy! I say: just try the darkones!]


C'era una Vuelta... and incongruous pics

Vuelta 2009 presentation. Anybody knows if our dear boys are going to race it?
[Andy's pic is by Casey B. Gibson, Fränk's one is from the oakley site. Enjoy!]
Ecco la Vuelta 2009: Si parte dall'Olanda
Il via alla corsa a tappe spagnola verrà dato il 29 agosto con una cronometro sul circuito di Assen. Altre tappe contro il tempo a Valencia e Toledo, diversi arrivi in salita, ma niente Pirenei. Contador: "Sembra proprio dura"
Alberto Contador è nato il 6 dicembre 1982. Ansa
MADRID, 17 dicembre 2008 - Partenza dal circuito motociclistico di Assen, in Olanda, il 29 agosto con una crono di 4,5 km; altre due prove contro il tempo (7ª tappa a Valencia e 20ª a Toledo) per un totale di 60,5 km; una tappa (l’8ª) con 8 gpm; cinque arrivi in salita (8ª, 9ª, 12ª, 13ªe 14ª tappa) ma neanche un metro di Pirenei; arrivo a Madrid il 20 settembre dopo 21 giorni di corsa e circa 3266 km percorsi; 20 squadre invitate che verranno definite a maggio. E’ questa la 64ª edizione della Vuelta a España.
POKER D'ASSI - Alla presentazione i quattro grandi di Spagna: Alberto Contador, Alejandro Valverde, Carlos Sastre e Samuel Sanchez. Nessuna divisione e polemica tra loro, ma grande allegria. Solo il campione olimpico, però, ha la Vuelta come obiettivo prioritario della stagione. Per Contador e Valverde è solo un’opzione, ma la loro presenza è legata al risultato del Tour, mentre l’assenza di Sastre, che prima del Tour farà il Giro, è quasi certa.
PARLA SANCHEZ - "Obiettivo minimo migliorare il terzo posto del 2007 - conferma Sanchez mentre mostra i cinque anelli con la scritta Beijng 2008 tatuati sulla "spalla destra) -. Già nella quarta tappa, con il finale sulle strade della Liegi, mi potrà dire molto. L’unica cosa che toglierei di questo percorso è il trasferimento da Liegi a Tarragona. Ci giochiamo in aereo il giorno di riposo".
L'ANALISI DI CONTADOR - La crono di Valencia (7ª tappa, ndr) sarà cruciale - spiega Contador - perché immette in una settimana durissima. La seconda settimana, infatti, è di una durezza incredibile. Mi piace che non ci siano salite eccessivamente dure, come esempio l’Angliru. Piacciono alla gente ma hanno poco valore tecnico".
VALVERDE SODDISFATTO - "E’ una corsa totalmente per scalatori - dice Valverde - con quasi tutte le difficoltà concentrate nella seconda settimana. Mi piace molto anche perché le crono non sono eccessivamente lunghe". Cambio di guardia anche alla direzione. Victor Cordero ha lasciato per limiti d’età. Al suo posto Javier Guillen, il suo delfino.
dal nostro inviatoClaudio Ghisalberti


About shoes throwing

Yes, these are their beloved feet. I hope they will never meet disagreeable persons as GW Bush, but if they do... cycling shoes are ok to throw and also harder then normal one.


I miss him!


Andy Schleck says 'no' to Giro, focuses on Tour
By Gregor Brown
Andy Schleck has excluded himself as one of the big names to race the 2009 Giro d'Italia. The Saxo Bank rider, winner of the 2007 Giro's young rider competition, will focus on the 2009 Tour de France.
"I am too young to do the Giro and the Tour. My main goal is the Tour next year, I want to concentrate 100 percent on it," Schleck said to Cyclingnews.
The 23-year-old Luxemburger challenged for the overall win in 2007, his first three-week race. He eventually finished 1:55 down on Danilo Di Luca, but he walked away with the maglia bianca of best young rider.
He skipped the Giro this year to focus on the Tour de France. He helped his teammate and brother, Fränk, take the yellow jersey and teammate Carlos Sastre onto the final overall victory. Like in the Giro of 2007, he came away with the white jersey of best young rider.
The 2009 Giro d'Italia will be one of the most closely watched races in recent history thanks to the participation of American Lance Armstrong. He joins a list of favorites that include Carlos Sastre, Denis Menchov, Ivan Basso and Gilberto Simoni.
"The Giro is not an easier race, maybe it is even harder than the Tour, but the Tour is the Tour. It is great for Carlos and the rest, but for me it is too much to focus on both of the races."
Schleck, who leaves this weekend for a ski holiday in Austria, will dedicate the first part of his season to the Ardennes Classics. Similar to 2008, he will target Amstel Gold, Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège.
"Last year [2008] I was good and this year [2009] I want to be better. Maybe I can have a victory in one of the three. ... It will be the first goal of the year."
He will race the Paris-Nice in preparation for the Ardennes Classics. His brother will race Italy's Tirreno-Adriatico, which runs nearly parallel to the French race.

Can we have a translation, please?

The general meaning is clear - Andy's going to race (and win off course) the Tour and not the Giro. But I'd like to understand all. You know I'm very curious about Schleck...
http://www.sporten.dk/andy-schleck-nul-giro-kun-tour "Andy Schleck: Nul Giro, kun Tour"
Team Saxo Banks komet bruger de store Ardenner-klassikere på at fintune formen frem mod årets Tour de France.
Han blev nummer to i Giro d'Italia i 2007. Og ligner en mand, som kunne vinde det italienske storløb. Men Team Saxo Banks Andy Schleck satser hårdt på at toppe i sommerens Tour de France og dermed overtage tronen efter sin forhenværende holdkammerat Carlos Sastre, som han hjalp til sejr i år.
- Jeg er endnu for ung til at køre både Giro d'Italia og Tour de France samme år, siger Andy Schleck til cyclingnews.
Ved præsentationen af næste års hold, afslørede Andy Schleck overfor Sporten.dk, at det i stedet bliver de store Ardenner-klassikere, som Amstel Gold Race, Fleche-Wallonne og Liége-Bastogne-Liége, som skal booste formen frem mod Tour-starten den 4. juli i Monaco.
- Klassikerne bliver også et mål for mig. Om jeg er stærkt nok til også at køre om sejren allerede der, må tiden vise. Tour de France er mit store mål for i år, siger den talentfulde lillebror til anderledes omstridte Fränk Schleck.
- Et andet løb, jeg godt kunne tænke mig at gøre det godt i, er VM som køres i Schweiz. Men det ligger så langt henne på sæsonen, at jeg ikke kan vide mig sikker på, om der er plads til endnu en formtop, siger Andy Schleck, der nu tager på en mindre skiferie i Alpe-landet.
- I december kører jeg ikke specielt mange kilometer på cyklen, men bruger i stedet tiden på at træne lidt alternativt som for eksempel at stå på ski. Når vi når januar, begynder jeg for alvor med grundtræningen på cyklen og kommer nok op på at køre hen imod 3.000 kilometer uden at gå for dybt i intervallerne, afslører Schleck den Yngre.


Schleck Tour of My Home

Welcome! This blackboard is in my kitchen and I made this stupid drawing when ALAD was deciding about Fränk: the ALAD[-IN] lamp genius says: "Fränk, you can express 3 desires!" and he: "1) to be acquited 2) to win the Tour 3) to kiss Ilaria"... Well, the first desire has been granted... I'm waiting for the others.

And this is my bedroom...

.... I cant understand why my husband is so jealous!

In the end, my Christmas tree and crib. I'm not christian, but I think Jesus was a good fellow and I have a little son who likes to decorate home.
Merry Christmas!


“I showed of the red lion on my jersey”

Tageblatt interview with Andy about the Olympic Games [Translation by Marit: thanks! The second pic is by CaseyB.Gibson.]
“Pretending there is nothing wrong, that’s the best way to describe Andy Schlecks mood, after his great performance in the Olympic Road Race at the foot of the Great Wall last Saturday was rewarded with a fifth place.
Tageblatt: Andy, congratulations on your great race. How disappointed are you over fifth place?
Andy Schleck: I am good now, a bit better than right after the finish. At that time, I would have loved to have burnt the Swiss’ flag. No, nonsense. But seriously: I was really angry. I just needed a bit more luck to win. I was the only one who had taken the initiative and attacked. Others just watched, and I went on. That went well. We were with three people in the descent.
T: Sanchez and Rebellin, who were with you, got gold and silver, you didn’t get anything!
A.S: What should I say? I am still young, I don’t have the strength in the sprint, it comes with age. But it has no use, to keep thinking about it. You have to look at things positively. I was fifth at the Olympics and I showed of the red lion on my jersey. I should stop asking myself questions. It makes no sense being disappointed. Fifth at the Olympics, if someone had told me that at the start of the year, I would have signed that.
T: People have the impression, that your group didn’t really do anything, Rebellin didn’t contribute anything to the leading work. Could that have gone better?
A.S: Of course, it could have gone better. Just like me, they didn’t expect, someone to attack from behind. Everybody made leading work, but everyone hold back a little. When the three of us came to the sprint, I can be good. But the others where there as well. If I would have known that, I would have gone at all strength. I’d rather be third than fifth.
T: Weren’t you thinking: It’s just the three of us, at least I have bronze?
A.S: No, when you are in that position, you want more. You want to win.
T: Kim and Frank spoke about bad conditions. How was that for you?
A.S: Everybody had those conditions. When you’re in form, it doesn’t matter, if it is warm or cold. Then you’re in front.
T: you were all good in form. People could have seen that at the attacks on the mountain.
A.S: yes, I felt good. At the start, I had breathing problems, I cooled myself off a bit with the air-conditioning. But that doesn’t matter. I have deserved my break now.
T: With your three attacks on the mountain, did you have the hope, to get away alone?
A.S: Being alone on the descent, would have been really hard. I have tried to get away, to leave Kolobnev behind. I knew, that he is very fast in a print. Rebellin is a fast man and Sanchez had beaten me for the third time. What should I say…
T: Cancellara won a medal, people can understand that you chased him, even when he’s a team colleague?
A.S: Of course we ride in a team, but at the Olympics, you ride for your country. That’s the way it is. Two kilometers before the finish I wanted more than bronze. I saved some strength. If I would have known that it would have come to this, I would have given all to finish third.
T: Have you spoken to him [Cancellara] after the finish?
A.S: After the finish, I was very aggressive. It was better that I didn’t speak to him.
T: People saw you gesturing on your bike in the last kilometers. Did you tell Rebellin and Sanchez, to work more?
A.S: I was saying ‘roulez, roulez’. And I was thinking that they had the distances, and were saying ‘combien, combien’. They didn’t have that either. There was no organization [see article Ausgerechnet Cancellara]. It was not that easy: Rebellin speaks some French, the other doesn’t speak anything but Spanish. What can you do?
T: The disappointment is deep!
A.S: I drink a lot of beer, nowadays, to get out of it. No, I’m joking. I am happy. We rode well as a team. On the last round, I asked Kim how he felt. He said ‘nothing special’. Once I believed to see him approach. He wasn’t, so I had to attack."

Cycling World Championship 2013 in Florence?

http://www.gazzetta.cliclismo.it/ Ciclismo: mondiali 2013, Firenze presenta il suo progetto
FIRENZE - E' stata varata oggi nel Salone dei Dugento di Palazzo Vecchio, la candidatura di Firenze ad ospitare i campionati mondiali di ciclismo 2013. C'erano, tra gli altri, il Presidente della Federazione ciclistica italiana Renato Di Rocco, e uomini simbolo del ciclismo toscano e italiano come Andrea Bartali, figlio del grande Gino, Michele Bartoli e Roberto Poggiali. Il comitato promotore fa capo all'assessorato allo sport del Comune di Firenze, ed includera' un'associazione sportiva, denominata FI2013, che supportera' la candidatura. Immediato il sostegno da parte di Alfredo Martini, presidente onorario della Fci, ex gregario di Coppi e Bartali, ct azzurro per quasi 20 anni, che ha accolto con entusiasmo l'invito ad assumere la presidenza onoraria dell'associazione sportiva. "Non si potra' dire di no a Firenze" ha commentato sicuro Martini. (Agr)

[Translation: Cycling: World Championship 2013, Florence presents his project]

WOW! I'm going to support it!


More and more important questions

Andy, what do you like to do in your free time? And what is your favourite movie/tv-programmes?
Fränk, what about you?
- ...and: has you had your hair cut because of my previous question?
Andy and Fränk, do you read fangirls blogs? what do you think about? are you more flattered or annoyed?
-What do you eat for breakfast when you are at home? in general what's your favourite food?
Andy, in an interview during the Giro 2007 you said you woke every night because of hunger and your team mates say your sleep is very perturbed. It's true?
Fränk, you often share the bedroom: your brother is stiller with you or simply you are used to?
Andy and Fränk, I think you like babies and a lot of racers became father quite early. What are you waiting for? a wife, ok [not indispensable but better: they are good boys.] but I mean: what are you waiting to make your own family?
Andy and Fränk, did you already tried your new Specialized bikes? It's difficult to change it after many years with Cérvelo?

- We right undestood about a riding camp in Maiorca?
- If we invite yuo to a Schleck Party will you come?


[S]SIS - and further important question to Andy

Sciaguratamente sono quasi tre anni che, fra abilitazione e corso per il sostegno, frequento quella fogna della SSIS (Scuola di Specializzazione per l'Insegnamento nella Scuola superiore). Quando ho visto Andy e Fränk sotto questa scritta... mi è venuto da ridere! Una S di meno, molto gusto in più. Viva la SIS e abbasso la SSIS!
[Translation: I'm studing to become a teacher and the name of the awfully stupid university school I attend to since 3 years (2 to teach philosophy and 1 to teach to disabled persons) is just SSIS. So when I found this pic I laughed a lot. No doubt SIS is better then SSIS.]

Further important question to Andy:

- You said in a interview:"He sees cycling as a job, he says, not as a live. I see a lot of men in the peloton, who only have cycling in their lives. That’s sounds awful to me. Don’t get me wrong, cycling is my passion. But there is more to live." Can you give us an example? what's important in your life excluded cycling (and family, we know)?



In attesa di completare la mia lista di domande importanti per i fratelli Schleck, di vederli tornare in gara e di festeggiarli degnamente con le mie blogmates, mi prendo un po' di tempo e ritorno alla mia lingua d'origine per il puro gusto di scrivere bene, dimenticando per un momento questo mio inglese barbarico e telegrafico dettato dalle esigenze della comunicazione globale.
Questo blog in effetti non è nato per impicciarsi della vita privata di qualcuno o per dare sfogo ad ansie (molto-)postadolescenziali. In effetti se la stagione non fosse finita, il blog non sarebbe neppure cominciato, perché a me piace 1) andare in bicicletta (quella da corsa quando ci riesco, la mezzacorsa da città sempre) 2) guardare le gare di ciclismo, possibilmente dal vivo (come a Varese) altrimenti in tv. Ma quando piove così e le gare non ci sono, tocca attaccarsi al pc per sapere almeno dove sono e che fanno i tuoi corridori preferiti, per ridere delle foto più buffe e di quelli che ti piace prendere in giro (Pippo Pozzato, Cadel Evans, Lance Amstrong, Riccardo Riccò...). E' bello scambiare opinioni e battute con persone da tutto il mondo e constatare che c'è gente che ha perso la testa come e peggio di te.
Sicuramente in questi mesi sono successe nel mondo cose – in genere tristi – che avrebbero meritato un commento. Ma quelle le hanno commentate già in tanti e senza cambiare assolutamente niente nel deplorevole stato in cui versa la sedicente umanità. Sono sempre più convinta che aveva ragione Althusser e che la sopravvalutazione dell'elemento soggettivo nella storia – ovvero nel divenire dei rapporti sociali – ha prodotto soltanto casini e sofferenza superflua. Meglio, assai meglio cercare di vivere bene noi per primi, rendendo piacevole il mondo a partire da quello immediatamente circostante. Forse sono soltanto scoppiata come tanti che hanno speso decenni nella militanza attiva (solo che io ho cominciato prestino).
Quando Andy dice che il suo desiderio è semplicemente 'essere felice' non fa che dare la traduzione verbale di quel suo luminoso sorriso. Tutto e niente. La felicità non è uno stato che si raggiunge una volta per tutte ma un delicato equilibrio fra fortuna e saggezza, ciò che ti capita e come tu lo vivi. Del resto ciò che ti capita dipende anche da ciò che ti vai a cercare. Ma non c'è proprio niente di male nel desiderare candidamente di essere felici.
In questo momento avrei proprio bisogno di qualcuno così: sereno, equilibrato, con i piedi per terra e capace di desiderare d'essere felice. Già solo per desiderarlo ci vuole una buona dose di autostima (che a me in genere manca, ma ci sto lavorando). Purtroppo sono circondata da sfigati elettivi, parenti stretti dell''incazzato da bar descritto da Stefano Benni, quello cioè che “autoalimenta la propria incazzatura”. Lo sfigato elettivo autoalimenta la propria sfiga, così ha sempre un buon motivo per lamentarsi e far polemica. Scarsamente costruttivo, sa sempre cosa si dovrebbe – o si sarebbe dovuto – fare, ma non lo fa. Tendenzialmente non fa niente, ma è sempre troppo occupato per divertirsi e se gli chiedi: che fai? Ti risponde: Ne ho di cose da fare! Oppure Le cose da fare non mi mancano! Le sue attività sono sempre – per lui – gravose necessità, mai libere scelte e assolutamente mai piacevoli, inutili, allegri passatempo. E si cruccia perché gli impediscono di salvare il mondo, e non di fare qualcosa di bello, sia chiaro. E' nato per soffrire e, benché ferocemente antireligioso, condivide in pieno certa etica dell'automortificazione.
Di questo tipo d'uomo – o donna – non ne posso più. Così è bello leggere le interviste di Andy e Fränk, inguaribili ottimisti, che sono contenti quando vincono, ma sanno stare sù anche quando la stampa li diffama e dichiarano allegramente che il ciclismo è il loro lavoro, ma ci sono cose più importanti per le quali vivere. Oppure i video surreali del mitico Dave Zabriskie (DZ), che da soli ti fanno ridere tanto che dopo non ti ricordi più perché eri triste. In generale il ciclismo mi affascina enormemente per la sua miscela di fatica, pericolo e inutilità. In questo è come l'alpinismo. Che senso ha rischiare e nella migliore delle ipotesi fare tanta fatica per vincere una corsa o raggiungere una cima? Ma qui mi fermo per evitare stucchevoli banalità.
Ho deciso di dedicare questo post a tutte quelle foto che mi hanno colpito ma non riguardano Andy e Fränk:
Questo qui è Van Sevenan, che per la terza volta ha vinto la lanterna di ultimo classificato al Tour de France: Cadel Evans ha dechiarato amaramente che la sua squadra - Silence Lotto - ha festeggiato di più lui che il suo secondo...secondo posto. Povero Cadel!

Qui accanto, Pereiro: sempre al Tour, è volato giù da un tornante nella discesa del Col dell'Agnello, precipitando per cinque metri e atterrando sull'asfalto. Valverde ha dichiarato: quando sono arrivato e l'ho visto lì con gli occhi chiusi ho pensato che fosse morto.
Cunego non ha brillato per i suoi risultati, ma di certo per la sua forza di volontà: ha completato la tappa nonostante le ferite riportate nella violentissima caduta. Ma deve ringraziare la dedizione dei suoi gregari!
E' andata meglio ad Agustyn: passato per primo il traguardo del GPM in cima alla Bonnette è franato giù per il ghiaione, ma grazie all'aiuto di un coraggioso spettatore e del suo meccanico (che ha recuperato la bici) è potuto ripartire ed è arrivato 37°.
Qui invece Cancellara stringe la mano a Larson sul podio dell'olimpiade (cronometro).

Ancora Fabian, con la medaglia d'oro e un'espressione d'ineffabile gioia.

Chi sa che bel sorriso avrà l'anno prossimo Andy Schleck quando avrà vinto il suo primo Tour de France o sarà secondo al fianco di suo fratello Fränk!

Qui Bruseghin alla Grande Sfida (vedi l'omnimo post).

Infine ancora il Tour: Chavanel sul podio, finalmente! Ha dichiarato che non dormiva da MESI tanto lo tormentava il desiderio di vincere una tappa... ma che adesso, probabilmente, non dormirà più all'idea di esserci riuscito. Comprensibilmente ha ringraziato la moglie per la sua pazienza!