Astana team manager Johan Bruyneel is hoping that Levi Leipheimer can do a ride in Thursday's decisive Giro d'Italia time trial and perhaps take the pink jersey, despite crashing at speed during the stage to Arenzano.
Bruyneel also predicted that Armstrong could do well and perhaps even be a contender.
?I think both (Levi and Lance) are going to be good. Lance feels good, Levi is, until today?s crash, in my opinion, the best time trialist in the world this year,? Bruyneel said.
?Levi hasn?t lost a single time trial this year. But tomorrow is different, It?s a big Tour, it?s long, it?s a lot of climbing and for him the crash today was not a good thing. But I think he?ll be up there. Levi has a good chance of winning the time trial.?
?I don?t want to make a prognostic about Lance but I expect him to be in the front. I don?t know if that?s top five or top three or seventh or eighth. I don?t know that. But he?s definitely going to give it all.?
Bruyneel knows that the time trial will be one of the hardest even raced in modern times.
?It?s long, very long. It?s one of the longest time trials everyone will have done. The speed will be low because it?s a hard course. It will be a one and a half hours of time trialing, that?s half an hour more than usual. That?s new for everybody and not a lot of people have done such a long time triaI. It?ll be interesting to see??
The secret of victory?
?Go fast uphill. Don?t crash downhill and be consistent. Over 60km you have to be consistent,? Bruyneel said.
?You cannot start too fast then slow at the end. It?ll be better to start slow and speed up at the end. I think the winner is going to be a combination between a real time trial specialist and a climber and the one who has the best of those two qualities will win the time trial.?
That sound like a perfect description of Bradley Wiggins to us.
|Giro d'Italia 2009 links|
Stage 11: Cavendish romps to second Giro stage win
Stage 10: Di Luca lays down the gauntlet
Giro rest day review (May 18)
Stage nine: Cavendish blitzes rivals to win in Milan
Stage eight: Siutsou makes it two in a row for Columbia-Highroad
Stage seven: Boasson Hagen takes treacherous stage
Stage six: Scarponi wins longest stage with big break
Stage five: Menchov wins mountain battle as Di Luca grabs the pink jersey
Stage four: Di Luca denies Soler on the line; Lovkvist takes pink jersey
Stage three: Cavendish loses pink jersey after being caught behind late crash
Stage two: Petacchi denies Cavendish the stage win
Stage one: Cavendish in pink as Columbia prove their point to Garmin
Cavendish: 'Today brought back memories of San Remo' (stage 11)
Is Di Luca trying too hard, too soon?
Wiggins loses time in the Giro (stage 10)
Armstrong and Basso say sorry for Giro protest
How are the Giro favourites doing?
Cavendish says 'I'm addicted to winning'
Riders stage go-slow protest during Giro stage in Milan
Cavendish cool before Milan sprint
No sympathy for Armstrong from Giro boss
Boasson Hagen celebrates his birthday early
Cavendish overjoyed for Boasson Hagen
Armstrong 'livid' at dangerous Giro stage
Astana riders wear faded kit in protest over unpaid wages
Armstrong sees Leipheimer in pink
Giro news round-up: 14 May
Wiggins: 'I can't keep smashing away on the climbs'
Wiggins eyes top 20 finish overall
Armstrong after Giro stage 5: 'That was hard'
Cavendish looking for Giro revenge
Armstrong happy with stage four performance
Lovkvist will fight to keep Giro lead
Giro could be last race for Armstrong's team
Vande Velde crashes out of Giro
Petacchi claims he didn't know of Cavendish crash
Cavendish struggles to find consolation in pink jersey
Petacchi: I've been working out how to beat Cav
I'm wearing pink on behalf of the team, says Cavendish
Wiggins ready to win Giro team time trial
Friday, May 8: Giro news round-up
Cavendish out to topple Garmin in Giro team time trial
Team time trial start times
Cycling Weekly's Giro d'Italia top ten prediction
Brits in Venice for Giro presentation
Armstrong overshadows overall favourites at Giro presentation
Armstrong confident of finding new sponsor for Astana
Armstrong working to save Astana team
Wiggins in top form for Giro
Garmin Slipstream kitted out for Giro opener
Dan Lloyd gets late Giro call-up
Armstrong's special Giro bikes unveiled
Daniel Lloyd overlooked for Giro ride
Cummings and Thomas not selected for Giro d'Italia
Cavendish tests Giro form at Tour of Romandie
David Millar confirms he's riding in 2009 Giro
Bennati to take on Cavendish in Giro 2009 sprints
2009 Giro d'Italia to start in Venice
Evans and Silence-Lotto disagree on Giro 2009 ride
Armstrong to ride 2009 Giro
Tuttosport reveals 2009 Giro d'Italia route
Dolce & Gabbana design new Giro jersey
2009 Giro d'Italia guide and features
Find the pink jersey competition
Giro d'Italia 2009: The Big Preview
British riders to have led the grand tours
CW's Giro top ten prediction
Brits in the Giro 2009
Brits in the Tours: From Robinson to Cavendish
CW Classic: the 1987 Giro d'Italia
2008 Giro d'Italia archive
Giro d'Italia 2008 coverage index - race reports, photos, results
From rule Britannia to cruel Britannia
Giro 2008: The final word on this year's race
Brits at the 2008 Giro: photo special
Five days to go, what's in store?
Giro d'Italia 2008: Rest day review (May 27)
Giro d'Italia 2008: Rest day review (May 19)
Giro d'Italia 2008 preview
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