VeloNews' Neal Rogers talks with Garmin's Daniel Martin about the decision to not start the Tour.
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Daniel Martin on Not Racing the 2009 Tour de France
Male: Well here we are to start the stage six in Gerone and with Garmin’s Slipstream Daniel Martin in the last minute made the decision not to race the Tour De France. Talk about that decision, was it yours, was it the teams? How did they come about?
Daniel Martin: It was kind of 50/50. It was the team that helped me decide because I mean, there’s a lot of guys who have experience who helped me like Dave Miller and Christian Vande Velde. They helped me a lot to make the decision. And Julian David was very helpful as well because obviously they know that you can't -- it needs to be absolutely 100% to start the Tour de France and I was probably about 95%. So that’s -- you can't -- that little bit of pain would just -- I was riding, no problem but it hurts so that’s -- you can't go into -- and if I -- I just feel like I wasn’t a harm in the team as well. So I just want to do the best for my teammates and yeah, just hold my 100%. I'm out of it.
Male: So actually a little -- you should have started with. There's a -- in the knee. Talk about how long you’ve had it, when it came about and what you're doing to treat it?
Daniel Martin: It was actually a week. I went to see a chiropractor and I guess he kind of just twisted something the wrong way and --
Male: That’s not from riding?
Daniel Martin: It was riding on top of that so I guess maybe I need to replace my shoe pads again a bit or something but I'm just using old shoes and it was yeah -- it started hurting maybe it was over training, I'm not really sure. Basically I just had few days off the bike and it was good as gold so yeah we’re -- I'm going to start riding this afternoon and but -- I will stay. I was training with the guys in the team time trial training and it was not a problem so it’s a -- it’s just a bit disappointing but I just needed a few days off the bike to recover. And I didn’t have -- I just ran out of time.
Male: Well you’re young. There’s many more Tours de France in your future. Obviously Garmin’s makes a home, European based here in Gerona. You live here. I don’t know how many months out of the year. What’s it like to see the Tour de France starting in your sort of adopted hometown?
Daniel Martin: I actually live here all year round so it is home. And it’s not especially as the sun come out and it’s incredible to see so many people here. It’s just like we started the Volta a Catalunya two months ago here and it was like 10 people on the side of the road and just -- the -- showing and the world’s just come roll at the time. And it’s just incredible. I was here -- I sort of started in Monaco and that’s -- all the guys there. And it is special to start it from Gerona.
This is the first time I found a bit of sadness I'm not in the race. But it will be nice to race. The race actually starts literally 50 meters from the house so -- but that was pretty cool. There would be times and maybe not to race in Gerona but definitely to race the Tour de France and if that’s not made my decision easier, I'm still really on and it’s best to think of long term than short term.
Male: And obviously you’re in Monaco because at that point, you still want to make sure if you're going to be racing or not. Well let me ask you one last question, with this change in your schedule what can we expect to see from you for the rest of the season?
Daniel Martin: I’m just going to take it easy for a few weeks to start training back and bike training then I'll probably do the Tour of Poland, just the first race back and then try to hit to Tour de Spain, with the best form possible. And yeah try and just race hard everyday and see what happens. I mean maybe the general will happen maybe I'll get tired in the third week. But it’s actually kind of exciting because it means I can go to the Tour de Spain with no pressure and to see what happens in the three week tour. I still have no idea. And then next year, hopefully I can come back to France and behind real ambitions, nowhere to expect.
Male: Well everything happens for a reason Dan, thanks for the time. Good luck healing and we look forward to seeing you in the results.
Daniel Martin: That’s exactly the way I look of it, everything happens for a reason. It’s meant to be and yeah, just kind of make the most of it so will be good.