Wow, scary stuff. In real life, Contador has been the victim of personal attacks by LA & JB for months. Armstrong has done it more actively recently in order to sell books, and because it's better press for Radio Shack if the general public has him trying to beat a champion for the Tour instead of "just" win it again. They call Alberto stupid, they said his press agent was stupid, thy give his brother fan a bad time. Bruyneel accused Contador of letting fame and money go to his head, while Armstrong posts twitpics of his personal soigneur holding plane, and had his personal photographer on a race moto with Astana credentials even though Graham Watson supplied the photos for the website.
These two guys have assembled "the best team in the world," with Bruyneel personally recruiting riders while taking an Astana paycheck (Rubiera & at least three others mentioned it in their announcements), and dragging out his own stay to keep new management from coming in, yet they're still obsessed with bullying Contador, who won't defend himself in the press. Here's the extent of his side of the "war of words":
"Well, my relationship with Lance is zero. My relationship with him is zero. I think that independently of what his character is, he is still a great champion. He has won seven Tours and played a big part in this one, too. But it's different to speak at a personal level. I have never really admired him that much, or will ever, but of course as a cyclist, he is a great champion."
A lot of us know the attacks will continue, because we understand the people making the attacks. Insult Sastre and Vande Velde in a book to make money, then try to make it go away by saying, not "I was wrong", but "that wasn't right". The can't insult an Australian rider, or a Brit, or an Italian, or a Schleck, without getting raked over the coals. But they think that they can keep going after Alberto. They don't even notice that a lot of people now refer to them as LA and JB so we don't have to say their names, or that decent people wonder why they're firing media attacks at someone they haven't seen in months.
I was ecstatic when I read the Martinelli quotes, because Contador has one more person to defend him from the nonsense. What the RS guys don't realize is that the new squad is going to rally around Alberto, and every personal attack will just make them a tougher team.