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Tour of California - Team CSC Press Conference & Interviews
By Staff
Date: 2/18/2007
Tour of California - Team CSC Press Conference & Interviews

Tour of California - Team CSC  Press Conference & Interviews
Bjarne Riis and the team discuss their strengths, and goals at the tour of California. Interviews with Fabian Cancellara and Christian Vandeveld. CSC team profile for the race ahead.

By Alicia Hopkins

The objectives for team CSC were discussed by Bjarne Riis (Director Sportif), Bjarne described the strengths of the team and the desire to win each race in which CSC participates. “We want to win every race we compete in, but we know that it is not always possible.” “To beat us, you will have to be strong.”

Team CSC at their pre race press conference. Photo c. Alicia Hopkins

Concerning the specific goals for the Tour of California, Riis stated, “It will be difficult to beat Discovery, they are very, very motivated for this race. This is an important race for us, and we will do our best, as we always do.”

When the team was asked about the loss of Basso, Riis and members of the team stated that the dynamics in the team had only shifted in small areas. Ivan Basso as team leader created a focus within the team from tactics to the race roster to guarantee victory for him. Without Basso, the team can employ various tactical approaches, that they were not free to do before

Additionally, the entourage of fans and the media that followed Basso no longer provide the team with an external pressure. “The team is not weak without him, we proved that last year.” Riis also discussed the training camps held for the team this year (South Africa and California), and the challenges that were imposed in order to strengthen the sense of teamwork among the riders. “It was very difficult to challenge them, as they work so well together.” Riis commented.

Representatives from CSC also displayed the new rider tracking technology that will be employed during the race. During the Tour of California several riders from the peloton will be equipped with tracking devices that will stream their position on the race course so that fans may follow it through Google Earth.

When asked if this technology would be useful to the Directors in the team car, Riis stated, “Yes, this type of information could be very useful.” Jen Voight commented, “Obviously, you cannot stop it.” [the use of technology] Bobby Julich stated that, “It is really beneficial for the fans of the sport as well. This will give people more knowledge to admire what we do, support what we do, and be interested in what we do.”

Zabriskie, Cancellara and Vinokourov... 1& 2 for CSC at the 2006 Worlds Time Trial. Photo c. Fotoreporter Sirotti

Chatting with Fabian Cancellara and Christian Vandevelde
After the press conference I had the opportunity to chat with CSC’s Fabian Cancellara and Christian Vandevelde.

Fabian Cancellara

Alicia: What are your expectations as far as the World’s (2007)?

Fabian: For the world’s what I have in my pocket. I have, and for other races that I have to do during season. There are so many races until the World’s and the season is so long, if I focus only on the same races, my motivation tends to go down. I have a lot of races that I would like to win, when I go to the start line, and I want to go to win, and I want to do my best, sure it is not the same as the start last year. I am starting a new season and a new life on my bike, and my private life is changing. With a new daughter, it has given me a new focus.

Alicia: How old is she?

Fabian: 31/2 months. I feel like there are many things that I miss since I am gone for so long. But I have a very good wife at home. And did she keep you up at night? Oh no, she sleeps through the night. She sleeps around 9 to 10 hours a day. (I reminded him that he is lucky!)

Alicia: So you are going for Paris Roubaix?

Fabian: Yes.

Alicia: And what other races?

Fabian: Flanderen and Milan-San Remo.

Alicia: Who is your favorite for San Remo? Other than you!

Fabian: Oh.. . It is the same as last year, there is no big change, there are always the same people you look for in the Classics races to win.

Alicia: Thank you Fabian, and much success for the season!

Fabian: Thanks.

CSC's David Zabrikie on the ITT podium in the stars and stripes as the USA Champion flanked by Jason McCartney, and Chris Baldwin. Photo c. Scott Schaffrick

Christian Vandevelde
So what are your plans this season?

Christian: Similar to last year. I will participate in some of the Spring Classics, and hopefully the Tour de France.

Alicia: So which Classics races are you going to race?

Christian: I will do Paris-Roubaix.

Alicia: And you have raced that before?

Christian: Yes, three times.

Alicia: Do you look forward to that race?

Christian: No, not at all! (both laugh) It is a very difficult race. I will try to make it until the technical sections! After that I will do Amstel and Fleche.

Alicia: Are you going to help Frank for those?

Christian: Yeah. We will also have Karsten too who was on the podium at LBL last year. I will support all the guys on the team in the races that I do.

Alicia: Do you see your role as more support?

Christian: Yeah, but in some of the races, I have a chance, like the stage I came close to winning in the Tour de France.

Alicia: That disappointed me by the way, I wanted you to win that stage! Hopefully I will get another opportunity. Do you anticipate riding on the Tour De France squad?

Christian: I hope so.

Alicia: What do you think about Basso not being part of the team?

Christian: It really hasn’t changed things that much. We do not have all the tifosi coming around.

Alicia: I would think that it would be more relaxed.

Christian: Oh it is, it is, we can go out and train, train hard without all the attention.

Alicia: Good luck this season.
Christian: Thanks.

Special thanks to Fabian and Christian, they were gracious with their time and comments.

Tour of California - Team CSC Profile

The 2007 edition of the Tour of California will see the return of Bobby Julich, Fabian Cancellara, Christian Vandevelde and David Zabriskie. For the opening prologue and individual time trial, team CSC will look to the 2006 Time Trial World Champion Gold and Silver Medalists Fabian Cancellara and David Zabriskie for outstanding performances.

The roster for the 2007 Tour of California includes the following: Fabian Cancellara, Juan Jose Haedo, Bobby Julich, Karsten Kroon, Stuart O’Grady, Christian Vandevelde, Jens Voight, and David Zabriskie. All and all a strong package to challenge the race and defend their team victory in the teams classification of last year.

Fabian Cancellara became a professional in 2001, and during his professional career he has won 5 Prologue stages, 5 Individual Time Trials, and Paris-Roubaix, and is of course the 2007 time trial champion of the world.

CSC's Fast Finishers Juan Jose Haedo and Stuart O'Grady
Juan Jose Haedo is a new edition to the CSC team, and became a professional in 2003. To his credit, Haedo won two stages during the 2006 edition of the Tour of California, as well as a stage in the 2006 Tour de Georgia.

Stuart O’Grady became a professional in 1995, and was known for years as an individual pursuit champion. O’Grady has won many stages with his sprinting ability; most notably in his career, O’Grady, in 1999, 2001, and 2005 was second overall in the Points classification at the Tour de France. Additionally in 2006, O’Grady was second overall in Züri-Metzgete, third overall in Paris-Tours, and third in Stage three at the Vuelta a España.

 Bobby Julich’s extensive professional career began in 1992, in 1998 he was third in the Tour de France, and first at Criterium International. Since 1998, Julich’s career was marked with health problems, and teams that failed to use his abundant talents. However, in 2004, his career began a renaissance with a bronze medal in the individual time trial at the Olympics, and a third overall at Paris-Nice. In 2005, Julich went on to finish win the Criterium International and Paris-Nice; 2006 continued Julich’s winning trend with a third place finish at the Tour of California and the opening Prologue of Paris-Nice. Julich is a popular and complete rider and an asset to the team in almost every area of the tour.

Karsten Kroon began his professional career in 1999, and most notably was first in Stage 8 of the 2002 Tour de France, and third place in La Flèche Wallone.

Christian Vandevelde’s career began in 1998, and in 1999 he was the best young rider in Quatre Jours de Dunkerque. Additionally Vandevelde in 2005, was first in the Mountains classification in the Benelux Tour, and in 2006, was first overall in the Tour de Luxembourg.

David "Z - man" Zabriskie
Last, but certainly, not least, is CSC’s David Zabriskie who began his career in 2001. In 2003, Zabriskie was best young rider in Quatre Jours de Dunkerque, and in 2004, Zabriskie won Stage 11 at the Vuelta a España. In 2005, Zabriskie won Stage 1 at the Tour de France and donned the coveted yellow jersey.

Additionally, that year Z started the year by leading CSC in tour of California finishing second in the first tour. But this only foreshadowed the good year to come as Zabriskie was first in Stage 8 and third in Stage 18 at the Giro d’Italia; 2006 would yield three first place finishes for Zabriskie which include the following: Prologue and Stage 3 at Critèrium du Dauphinè Libèrè, and the American Individual Time Trial Championship. Most notably for 2006, was Zabriskie’s picked up Silver with his second place overall at the World Individual Time Trial Championship.

Team CSC - Founded in 2001
Bike - Cervelo
Group - Shimano
Tires - Vittoria
Primary Sponsor (Business Type) - Internet and Technology Services

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