April 18, 2005- San Diego, CA- Lifelong cyclist and Masters-aged rider Tim Jackson has announced his return from retirement. Jackson, the Brand Manager for Masi Bicycles based in Vista, California, says that he is trying to fill a void generated by the announcement of Lance Armstrong's retirement. Armstrong, the 6-time winner of the Tour de France, announced his impending retirement Monday during a pre-race press conference in Atlanta, Georgia.
"I'm merely trying to replace Lance's place in the peloton. His retirement is a big blow to American cycling and as a proud American cyclist, I don't want to see our role in the world of professional cycling diminished in any way", Jackson stated during a brief phone interview. Representatives for Armstrong could not be reached for a response to the news.
Jackson believes that by beginning an intensive training program now, he'll be ready for the 2006 Tour de France. Jackson stated, "I'm not saying I can win right now- that would be a foolish statement to make. I think I can get back to where I was before I retired a few years ago. If so, I think I can compete again and should be able to stand up on the Tour podium." When contacted for comment about Jackson's plans, representatives of Haro Bicycles, the owners of Masi Bicycles, were somewhat startled by the news. Mike Varley, Product Manager at Haro and Jackson's immediate superior, stated "Tim says a lot of things that you just can't take too seriously. It was hot last week and I think he rode a little too long without enough water."
Never the less, the news of Lance Armstrong's imminent retirement is the most significant news in cycling this year.
(Good luck Lance! It's been a great ride.)