Voigt plays down Armstrong comments

CSC's Jens Voigt won't be drawn on comments he made earlier this week suggesting Lance Armstrong won

CSC's Jens Voigt won't be drawn on comments he made earlier this week suggesting Lance Armstrong won
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM Jens Voigt has refused to talk about comments he made earlier this week to the Berliner Morgenpost saying that he did not think that Lance Armstrong would ride the Tour de France this year. Contacted by procycling after yesterday's Paris-Nice stage into Montlimar, the CSC rider said "that issue is no longer a topic for conversation". A CSC source told procycling that Voigt had talked with Armstrong about the Tour while they were riding in the peloton together earlier this week before the American quit the race with a sore throat. On Tuesday the Berliner Morgenpost quoted Voigt as saying: "[Ivan] Basso can win the Tour. And especially because I still don't believe that Lance Armstrong will participate "Lance knows that his streak won't last forever. And he sure doesn't want to finish in second place. If he does start, then he will win the Tour again with five minutes' advantage. But I just don't believe it." Voigt was more forthcoming on the subject of CSC's hopes for today's stage to the summit of Mont Faron, where he was the victor in the Tour of the Med just last month. "CSC are well placed, but it will be a lot harder now because all the ProTour teams are here rather than just the 10 there were at the Tour of the Med," said Voigt. "Me and Bobby [Julich] are well placed, but it will be hard to dictate the pace this time. We will try to get Bobby into the leader's jersey, [team manager] Bjarne [Riis] will come up with a plan for us on Friday morning and we'll see how it goes. "I'm certainly feeling as good if not better than I did three weeks ago, but the other teams have made up a lot of ground on CSC now. Back then CSC were clearly the strongest team, but now everyone is fully fit and motivated. I think Alejandro Valverde and Alexandre Vinokourov are the most dangerous riders." Asked whether the fact Paris-Nice is the first ProTour event had made a difference to the racing, Voigt declared: "Definitely, it's been like a mini Tour de France. Everyone is nervous, there is full-on stress and pressure, and the intensity is very high right from the gun. I think all ProTour races will be like this because there is a limited number of them. I think it will take racing to a different level."
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