In short and translated: Cyrille Guimard about Andy Schleck

http://28.img.v4.skyrock.net/4872/49464872/pics/2005828301_1_5.jpgThere is an interview (in French) here:
In short:
1. No more a cyclist: "If Andy can't find very quickly the desire and passion for cycling, his retirement is near."
2. Who is Guimard: well... you should know :) if it isn't the case have a look here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyrille_Guimard In 2004 Andy was racing for him in VC Roubaix as an amateurs. "He was 18 years old and former sporting directors Bernard Hinault, Greg Lemond and Laurent Fignon had immediately got the talent of the young Luxembourger."
3. A too young pro: "Andy has got a pure class. But it has been a mistake for him to turn pro so young. I asked Bjarne Riis to let me Andy for an year more. Andy wasn't ready to turn pro, neither physically nor mentally.  It would have been necessary to let him grow. Now Andy pays the piper. "
4. A new start: "You are 100% a cyclist or you're not. He must stop for six months, working on the basis and get a psychological help."
A new team: "You can't solve problems with those who created them. Andy passed from a full controll style team (Riis) to being almost team boss (note: in 2011) passing through the Bruyneel's episode and the abandon by the sponsor of the team.  Those are things that leave a  mark in a man, not to mention the positive control of his brother. I'm sure that Andy would feel better in a team like FDJ, where there is still the passion for cycling and everything is not just business. I repeat: he must find the desire to ride a bike. 80% is dued to motivation "

My opinion:
Guimard has been often hard on Andy and I didn't like that but this time he could be right. Maybe not about the team - I believe that Luca Guercilena as a team manager can change drasticly some things even with a team owner like Becca. And if he can't I think he would leave. But about the need of a new start, of a break and also of psychological help. When we have troubles with our teeth we have feel not ashamed going to the denstist and it should be the same when our soul is concerned. Then there many different kinds of 'therapy', the point is to ask and get support. Elite sport is awfully stressful and in general unhealty like many other great activities. We don't need to avoid them but elite athletes always need a pychological support and it  surprises me to hear (by Guimard, not sure it's true) that Andy didn't get it normally. 
In any case and like I told often: Andy is born to race but when racing makes him unhappy it's time to change. Not to 'stop'! what a wrong word! nothing stop till when you are alive! we always go on and changing is the only way to go on happyly.
Andy can takes a break and have a new start like Guimard says, he can keep racing but working on himself with his team support and change his way to live his racing, he can decides that after 10 years of racing in procycling and at only 27 years there are things he would like to try instead
The only important thing is: be happy and realize yourself fully. All the rest doesn't count.


Anonymous said...

When we are unhappy at work what do we do? Do we quit our job and try to find another job or do we just quit and do nothing? Most common mortals like you and me would most probably look for another job. Most of us cannot afford to quit and do nothing not only for financial reasons but also because I believe that work (whatever it may be) keeps us sane and gives us our dignity and satisfaction for earning our daily bread and butter.

I read this article yesterday evening and whilst I agree with Cyrille Guimard on many points, I think that Andy and the team have to work on Andy's motivation and confidence. In my opinion he's weak in both right now and when you are a top sportsman and you lack these characteristics you cannot perform well. The more you you perform badly the more you lose your confidence and feel depressed. It is traumatic for anyone to be up there one day and then fall flat on your face in a matter a year or so.

During the course of our life we all go trough difficult moments. Problems and difficulties are part of life. The most important thing is to find the strength, courage and motivation to pick up oursleves and do something about our problems.

I sincerely wish and hope that Andy finds the courage, motivation and the strength to do that and there is nothing to be ashamed of to admit that he needs help.

Good luck Andy. H

Ilaria said...

Thx for your comment and of course you are right.

Anonymous said...

Chapeau to Luca Guercilena for taking Andy under his wings. I have no doubt that Luca is serious and knows what he is doing. I have full faith in him.

As for you Andy... if you read Ilaria's blog... pull yourself up and show the people out there that you are a real cyclist and a responsible team player. I don't care whether you win or lose but I want to see you clench your teeth, suffer and enjoy the pain of climbing a mountain. Sports is like love. It gives us pleasure and sometimes it can be painful. One thing for sure is that there are people like me who miss seeing you in races. You are too young and have much more to give. Get that in your head please.