Dear Andy


 11 July 2012

Dear Andy,
How does it feel not to be in the Tour the France this year?
Are you following it? Of course you are.
This Tour de France has been in your head
since a particular Sunday in July last year.
When some Australian guy was standing next to you.
Singing along to the Australian anthem.
With your brother standing on the other side.
I bet you’ve been working hard on your time trial this winter.
More than 90 kilometres against the clock this year.
Did that scare you? Or disappoint you?
Everyone knows that you are at your best in the mountains.
Actually, nobody thought you would win this year.
I guess that a lot of fans were not happy
when they found out that you were injured.
A lot of them probably wanted to come to the Tour de France
just to see you. You know what I think?
Next year the organisation of the Tour de France will add a lot of mountains. Finally the Tour route will be in your advantage.
The ASO would like to see a young, talented rider from Luxembourg win.
You with a grin on your face while you climb the Aubisque.
All the riders unable to follow you, so you ride solo to the finish.
No long time trials to make you feel nervous.
I am absolutely sure that in this year’s Tour the time trials will be decisive.
All of the potential winners perform well in time trials.
I think that the difference between the winner
and the number two will only be a few seconds.
But that’s not the point here. Back to you, Andy.
All those hours of training, it was all for nothing.
If you let me, I would like to give you some advice.
Stick to what you can.
You will probably always lose if it comes to time trials.
You can either be good at it or not.
And, unfortunately, the latter refers to you.
So don’t waste your precious time.
Be good and even better in what you do best.
Climbing those mountains.
Improve your skills in the mountains,
show the other riders that they will not likely be able to beat you there.
Like you said yourself, you don’t want to “become the new Zoetemelk”.
You can still become the new Bahamontes.
Take the risk and go for it.
You have got nothing to lose.

© Sylvain Béragnes

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