Lance Armstrong Returns at Tour of the Gila
Lance Armstrong has announced that his return to racing after his collarbone fracture will commence at the challenging 23rd Tour of the Gila in New Mexico, USA. After undergoing surgery the Texan was back on the bike just days after a crash and subsequent collar bone fracture in the Castilla y León stage race in Spain on March 23.
Chris Horner, who fractured his collar bone and a rib in the Tour of the Basque Country on April 9 will return to racing as well in the same race. Three time Tour of California and recent Castilla y León champion, Levi Leipheimer, will also participate. Leipheimer stated, "Lance and I are psyched to race the Gila, its great preparation for Europe, and we know this race will be challenging. There is a hell of a lot of uphill."
"I'm excited to get back to competitive racing. The recovery training has been going well but nothing compares to getting back into the bunch and racing," said Armstrong on his first trip to the Tour of Gila.
The seven-time Tour de France champ has never participated in the Tour of the Gila and is expecting a challenging race with thousands of feet of climbing over five days. He considers it a great opportunity to race in the U.S. and continue his preparation for the upcoming Tour of Italy. The race also gives Armstrong and his LiveStrong Foundation an opportunity to further the LiveStrong Global Cancer Campaign. "In states like New Mexico and in many parts of America and the world, underserved and rural residents struggle with cancer prevention, access to treatment and affordable healthcare.
That's why we're looking forward to taking the LiveStrong Global Cancer Campaign to New Mexico along with the Tour of Gila. Our goal is to raise awareness of the challenges New Mexicans face when it comes to fighting cancer and to make progress against this disease."
The 23rd Annual Tour of the Gila is a 5 day stage race in Silver City, New Mexico, USA on from April 29th - May 3rd. Armstrong, Horner and Leipheimer will start as individual riders in the Mellow Johnny’s jersey. More information about the race can be found at www.tourofthegila.com. RoadCycling.com editor Dave Osborne is helping officiate the race.