Casar and Guesdon head FDJ – Big Mat lineup in Santos Tour Down Under
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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Casar and Guesdon head FDJ – Big Mat lineup in Santos Tour Down Under

by VeloNation Press at 7:30 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour Down Under
 
Strong selection by French team

Sandy CasarTriple Tour de France stage winner Sandy Casar and former Paris-Roubaix champion Frederic Guesdon are two of the riders who will line out as part of the FDJ-Big Mat team in next month’s Santos Tour Down Under.

The lineup for the team was confirmed today and includes the duo, as well as five others.

Guesdon won Paris-Roubaix in 1997, his first season with the team, and took Paris-Tours nine years later. Now 40 years of age, he’s still riding well and has gathered plenty of experience during his 14 years as a pro. Sandy Casar is another very strong competitor and was fifth overall in the Australian race in 2000, netting the best young rider award.

Race organiser Mike Turtur said that he is impressed by both. “Sandy Casar is an extremely accomplished rider, with three Tour de France stage wins to his name, as well as winning the Route de Sud in 2005,” he said. “Guesdon signed with FDJ in 1997 and in 2012 will be entering his 15th season with the team. This demonstrates the integral role he still has to play.”

Double Belarusian national champion Yauheni Hutarovich is also part of the lineup, the 2010 Vuelta a España stage winner being another who could fare very well. Ditto for quintuple Finnish road race champion Jussi Veikkanen, as well as the well-known Jeremy Roy. Turtur predicts the latter could fare well in the Skoda King of the Mountains contest, pointing out that he wore the equivalent jersey on stage 13 of this year’s Tour de France.

The lineup is completed by the Frenchmen William Bonnet and Arnaud Courteille. All in all, Turtur is pleased by the lineup the squad has put forward. “We are thrilled with the team Equipe Cycliste FDJ – Big Mat are sending to next year's race,” he said. “This is a highly experienced and competitive team from who we will expect a great performance.”

The UCI WorldTour event runs from January 15th to 22nd, and includes the summit finish of Old Willunga Hill.

FDJ-BigMat team for Santos Tour Down Under:

Sandy Casar (FRA)
William Bonnet (FRA)
Arnaud Courteille (FRA)
Frederic Guesdon (FRA)
Yauheni Hutarovich (BLR)
Jeremy Roy (FRA)
Jussi Veikkanen (FIN)

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