Not much exciting so far at the World Road Championships 2006 and its gone 2.00 pm. I awoke to the bells at about 7.30 and was first in the shower room. Breakfast was fine, but there’s still no small-talk n there; it’s not a bad thing I guess — you are out the door pronto.
I was sat in the press centre immediately it opened at 9.00 and I’ve been writing ever since. I did my piece about Vino, Zabriskie and Cancellara plus their respective bikes and since then I’ve been getting the old VeloVeritas dairy up to date.
I’d better get some pictures off to Martin now then think of what I’m going to write about today — maybe an interview or two.
Fast-forward to 8.55 pm, back in the press room, just after I wrote the above the wi-fi went down, it’s still down now, I’m on a hard-wire connection just now. Believe it or not it’s a T-Mobile gig — it’s like Ford saying we’ve no cars available. After I had sussed-out what was up (because I’m a computer novice I always think that it’s my fault when things go wrong) I decided to bolt and get some work done then return here later.
I rang Max Sciandri (name-dropping I know) and asked if we could meet-up to talk about his new role with the GB squad.
The team hotel for the World Road Championships 2006 was up at Anthering, a lovely spot at the foot of the hills near the time trial course. I had to get a cab but it was a nice run and the fare wasn’t too sore.
When I arrived Max was outside chatting with the other team officials, as we walked to the hotel for a coffee David Millar strolled-out. ‘Hi-there how are you?’ says he to me. I don’t know if he was just being polite or he remembered me from the Tour but I’m going with the latter!
Max is a nice guy and articulate to boot, and in the closing part of our conversation he told me about the day he quit cycling.
The last days of his career were spent with CSC and don’t forget that despite the fact that the Linda McCartney team (with whom he spent his last full season) was a disastrous scam, he won the Tour of Lazio (a BIG race in Rome ) for them just the season before he signed for Riis. ” I had been riding the Tour of Georgia and we had won the team points prize.
I was standing on the podium with my bottle of champagne, looking-down at the huge crowd and I just got this feeling of satisfaction. I decided to go down to Miami to see my brother, I remember Lance (Armstrong) saying to me; ‘if you go to Miami that’ll be the end Max’.
I said: ‘No, no man I’ve got the Olympics in Athens’. But he was right, my motivation had gone and I never raced again. I’ve got no regrets though, maybe I could have been a bit more dedicated but like I say — no regrets.”
It was a taxi back here after that to write-up my interview and email it and the pics off to our editor Martin, then I wrote this.
It’s 9.25 pm and my brain is crashing — must be all those faulty T-Mobile micro-waves in here.
Talk to you tomorrow.