Speeding Through Paradise: Oakley’s Frank Schleck Victorious at Amstel Curaçao
It was definitely a pleasant change in scenery.
In a sport known for charging through challenging landscapes and conditions, riders enjoyed a sunny ‘vacation’ this past weekend at the Amstel Curaçao event in the Caribbean. Oakley’s Frank Schleck mashed his way to victory on the beautiful Dutch island, boosting his morale and building strong form as he prepares to begin racing for Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project, a new squad featuring many of his current teammates from Team Saxo Bank.
Frank powered clear ahead of Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-Farnese Vini) and Niki Terpstra (Team Milram) at the tail end of the race, with the other professional and amateur riders finishing further back. And he never looked back, grabbing the race that his brother (and fellow Oakley rider) Andy won in 2008.
The victory builds on a strong season for Frank, who won the Tour de Suisse with an uncharacteristically solid final time trial – and took out a stage in the Tour of Luxembourg. He also finished seventh in the Amstel Gold Race and eighth in Liège-Bastogne-Liège.
His Tour de Suisse success raised hopes that he and his brother could fight for the first-ever family podium in the Tour de France – but a crash out on the cobblestones at stage three effectively derailed any chances. A broken collarbone led to his immediate retirement from the race…and while he came back later in the year to net fifth overall in the Vuelta a España, he wasn’t quite at the same tip top form.
Nonetheless, a great victory and a momentum builder for Frank in the Caribbean!
Results – Top Three
1. Frank Schleck (Oakley – Team Saxo Bank)
2. Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-Farnese Vini)
3. Niki Terpstra(Milram)