Tyler Hamilton Diary
One step at a time.
One step at a time? <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /?>
The Tour of Romandie went better than we had hoped or imagined it would. Together, we were able to drum up victories in stages 3 and 5, win the overall individual and team classifications. It was a really nice feeling. We have been working hard all spring and it was great to finally see all of the collective efforts of the team and staff pay off.
My teammates rode like men on a mission throughout the race. Many of them were competing in their own backyards and were extra motivated to make the most of their home court advantage. With these guys setting the tone, the rest of us followed suit and, as a result, every rider on the team had a good race.
I was more than fortunate to have guys like Alex Z?lle, Oscar Camenzind and Oscar Sevilla, to name a few, busting their butts for me. With the kind of support these guys were dishing out, it was difficult to consider letting them down. It was impressive to see these guys completely dedicate themselves to our sole objective of winning the overall.
This was a tough race, and these guys absolutely buried themselves to keep me in good position. And their efforts didn't go unnoticed. I can't tell you how many riders approached me to tell me how strong the team looked. For me, it was gratifying to know these guys were being noticed. I'm really proud of this team, and I want everyone to know how talented these guys I'm surrounded by are.
We have been on a mission to really develop into a cohesive group since our first meeting last November. We have made slow and steady progress through the winter and spring. This can take time, and I know some folks were starting to doubt us. But I hope we showed over the course of this last race that we are serious about making this team a success. We still have a long way to go to get things to the level we aspire to, but I think we have shown now that we are capable of doing good things.
That last TT
There was a really special feeling in the air at the finish in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" /?>
I just wish I had been a little less cross-eyed after the finish so I could really enjoy the moment. It had been a while since I had seen so many tears at a bike race. Most people think Phonak is a new team, but they have been around for a while, quietly developing into the organization they are today.
There are a lot of people who have invested their days and nights and livelihoods into growing this team. Namely, Andy Rihs, the owner,