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Ullrich is the main rival(2 posts)

Ullrich is the main rivalEric16
Feb 1, 2002 3:19 PM
Finally a little bit of sanity to shut up those Simoni fans who think that Gilberto "Please pick my team M. LeBlanc" Simoni is the greatest threat to Lance in his 4th bid for yellow. It comes in the form of a Lance interview posted on the daily peloton...

http://eurocyclingnews.rivals.net/default.asp?sid=1041&p=2&stid=8231796

Simoni's comments that Lance regarded him as his "chief rival" for the tour always seemed a little strange to me as I never remembered Lance ever saying that and besides, Ullrich is obviously the only rider at Lance's level. Well in the interview Lance clarified that,

"'I never have said that Simoni was my great rival.' Lance says. 'The question was -- who is his great rival for the Tour? And my answer was -- Ullrich. Somebody else? Beloki, Simoni, Sevilla... From there, they (the journalists) put Simoni first.'"

That sounds right to me, Jan and Lance will fight it out...everyone else is fighting for third. If you listened to Simoni talk about the tour you'd think Jan wasn't even racing! Gibi is promoting himself as the main rival because 1) he likes to talk, and 2) His team needs a wildcard pick. Let's not kid ourselves, Simoni is a great cyclist and a GC contender, but no more than Beloki, Sevilla, and I'd add to that list Moreau and Heras (plus, to a lesser extent, Levi, Hamilton, Millar). Simoni might get a stage win in the mountains but is he Lance's greatest threat? Please. He can't beat Lance and furthermore he can't beat Jan! There's Lance and there's Jan...the rest are mere mortals.
Simoni will crush Jan this year. :-) (nm)shirt
Feb 1, 2002 4:24 PM