- Dec 30, 2011
In hindsight the chest infection does not seem to be related whatsoever to the Bilharzia. It seems to be just what it says: a mere chest infection. I found this on the Sky website:Libertine Seguros said:There is a discrepancy on the diagnosis. Julich advises they tested for it after California, found he had it, then it was treated (which, yes, could have been after Suisse).Froome himself advises he found out he had it in December 2010. Also, with regards to the chest infection line, Bilharzia/Schistosomiasis is not a chest infection. Not even close. Now, he may have been more susceptible to chest infections as a result of the bilharzia, but it's not like having had the disease is some kind of big secret he needed to hide from the rest of the péloton.
This is especially considering that the medication takes 6-7 weeks according to Cound and therefore if he was diagnosed with it in December he would have taken it in December and it certainly would not be effecting him come early May. So it is obvious that this chest infection is entirely unrelated to the Bilharzia.Froome proved there are few stronger after an impressive run to 15th overall at the Tour de Romandie at the end of April, yet the Kenyan-born rider has seen his preparations take a knock following a chest infection.
He added: “When I got back from Romandie I had to take about a week off the bike because I got a bit of a chest infection and cough. That held me back a little bit but I can feel since coming over here that I’m feeling better and better each day so hopefully by the time the race starts on Sunday it will be pretty much clear.
My thoughts are that he still had the lingering effects of the Bilharzia which may have been coming back as he got further and further away from the date he finished taking the medication, but he was indeed stricken by the chest infection.
Indeed the DS at California admitted as much:
The Swede is hoping the run of success continues for the rest of the week but also highlighted the change of focus for stage four: "For sure it's going to be a different race tomorrow. It's no secret that Chris Froome is the man we'll look to on the GC and even though he got a little bit sick after the Tour de Romandie, there were encouraging signs both today and yesterday as he was a big part in both lead-outs.
I don't find your suggestion too hard to swallow. In fact it does make some logical sense. That it is not mentioned was probably because Froome was small fish then, didn't really matter compared to now and we may as well wait and see what transpires and if it gets better. No cycling website/magazine cared to hear his opinion.It's not like a training technique that works really well, that the team might want to avoid letting others know about lest they copy it and the team lose their competitive advantage. If it had been diagnosed back in December 2010 as Froome says, then surely you would expect there to have been some mention of it between December 2010 and August 2011 - especially as he points out that he "re-did" the treatment after the Tour de Suisse, suggesting he had already had some kind of treatment for it. This would then be the only way that you could square up Froome's December 2010 timeline with Julich's May 2011 timeline (with the initial treatment being after Froome's date of December 2010, but then another recurrence of the disease probably in May 2011 to allow for the better Romandie performance probably being comparatively healthy, resulting in them testing for it again, finding it and treating it in June 2011), but then would make it surprising that this wasn't known about or mentioned at all until the guy turned into Johann Mühlegg on a bike on August 28, 2011.
He only talks to Velonews in September 2011 because of his success, before that nobody cares.
Also there is no other alternative to what you suggested, he had to be given the treatment after Suisse because it takes 6 weeks or so to work and therefore he could not have done it in between Suisse and California.
And finally this before the Vuelta:
The reference to illness it obviously the Bilharzia and probably the chest infection. He does not mention it explicitly which is annoying, but then again as I said above why does he need to when he is small fish?He said: “I feel like I’ve had a good season so far. I’ve learnt a ton about myself and my capabilities. I’ve had one or two problems with illness but we’ve treated them and the team have been really supportive. They are sorted and, touch wood, everything seems to be going in the right direction right now.