Boasson Hagen gets 2012 season underway in Tour Down Under
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Friday, November 18, 2011

Boasson Hagen gets 2012 season underway in Tour Down Under

by VeloNation Press at 8:22 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour Down Under
Thomas, Rogers and Dowsett also part of Sky Procycling’s lineup

Edvald Boasson HagenAfter a fine season where he won two stages in the Tour de France, a stage plus the overall of the Eneco Tour and the national time trial championships, Edvald Boasson Hagen will get his fifth pro season underway in the Santos Tour Down Under in January.

The Norwegian, who is still just 24 years of age, will head the Sky Procycling team in the event, which gets the 2012 WorldTour calendar underway on January 15th.

Boasson Hagen will be part of a very strong lineup from the British squad, with Geraint Thomas, Alex Dowsett, former world time trial champion Michael Rogers also part of the team. The selection is completed by three other strong riders, namely the Australians Chris Sutton and Mathew Hayman plus the American Danny Pate.

Boasson Hagen’s sprinting ability and strong all round abilities mark him out as a possible winner of the race, although that will depend on what form he carries into the event. He spends the winter in Norway and the harsh weather conditions there mean that he may not have the same amount of on-bike training miles in his legs than his rivals.

Still, race director Mike Turtur recognises that he is likely to be one of the strongest riders in the event. “We are really excited about the inclusion of Edvald Boasson Hagen in the team,” he said, recognising the Norwegian’s potential to shine on the course there. “He is the current Norwegian National Time Trial Champion for the fifth year running and a two time Tour de France stage winner. He is fiercely competitive, young and hungry for a win.”

Rogers won the race in 2002 and now over the mononucleosis which has hampered his career in recent seasons, he will be fired up to try to do well. Fellow Australian Sutton is a fast sprinter and could well feature in the race, particularly as his morale has been boosted by his stage win in the Vuelta a España. Turtur believes he is one to watch.

“We look forward to seeing Sutton's form continue and it is always good to see Hayman racing at our event,” he said. “He is a crowd favourite and one of the good guys of Australian cycling - he always races hard.

“USA's Danny Pate was first overall in the King of the Mountains Competition at the 2011 Grand Prix Cycliste de Montreal, making him one to watch for the ŠKODA King of the Mountain points here,” Turtur added.

He also expects that Thomas and Dowsett will be strong. They are both recognised as part of a talented new wave of British riders, and showed fine form in the country’s national tour in September. Dowsett won the final day time trial there, while Thomas took the points classification.

Today’s announcement of the Sky Procycling lineup follows that of the Rabobank selection for the race. Former Tour Down Under winner Luis Leon Sanchez will lead the Dutch squad there.

It will take place in Adelaide and the surrounding area from January 15-22.

Sky Procycling team for 2012 Santos Tour Down Under:

Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR)
Geraint Thomas (GBR)
Christopher Sutton (AUS)
Alex Dowsett (GBR)
Michael Rogers (AUS)
Danny Pate (USA)
Mathew Hayman (AUS)


Sean Yates (GBR)


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