Tinkoff-Saxo owner Oleg Tinkov has piled the pressure on team manager Bjarne Riis following the team’s somewhat lacklustre start to the season.
When the row occurred, however, Alberto Contador’s solo win at the Vuelta a Andalucia was their sole victory, and the Russian was reportedly angered by his team leaders’ performances in both Tirreno and Paris-Nice.
“A big talent must always remain under pressure, whether it comes from God or they apply it themselves,” Tinkov told L’Équipe. “And when you’ve got a contract that amounts to several millions that’s even more the case.
“I put myself under pressure every day. These are athletes and directeurs sportifs, they’re not the Princess with the pea.”
Tinkov will hope his big money signing Peter Sagan can continue his winning ways at Milan-San Remo this weekend, although the Slovak knows a win in the Italian Classic is far from straightforward.