Tour de France 2005 Lance Armstrong podium

Lance Armstrong is in France this week but made it clear he did not want to talk about the Tour de France.

According to a report in the International Herald Tribune Armstrong flew into Paris on Tuesday before taking a private jet to Nice to spend a few days with friends before the first Astana training camp in Lanzarote.

Armstrong was happy to speak to Tribune journalist Sam Abt about his weight and training but refused to talk Tour de France.

"I don't want to get into that," Abt reported Armstrong as saying in the IHT when asked if he was in Paris to meet with the organisers of the Tour de France to do a deal on his participation in next year?s race.

"Quit hassling me," he joked. You're trying to get an answer out of me. I don't have that answer. I don't."

?Plenty of time to see them next year. They run the Criterium, too, so we can talk then if we want to,? Abt reported Armstrong as saying after the Texan revealed he will ride the French two-day race organised by ASO who also organise the Tour de France.

He also hinted he might ride Milan-San Remo on March 21, as well as his already confirmed programme of the Tour Down Under, the Tour of California, the Tour of Flanders and the Giro d?Italia.

Armstrong was more willing to talk about his Livestrong cancer charity during the interview and confirmed his return to racing could last more than one season.

Despite his problems with the French Tour de France organisers and his worries about his safety on French roads during the race, Armstrong was expected to go training in the South of France several times this week. He will probably travel to Lanzarote on Saturday for the start of his first training camp with the Astana team on Sunday.

See Cycling Weekly's November 27 issue for an exclusive, in-depth Q&A interview with Lance Armstrong at his home in Texas


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