Pooley relieved at AA Drink-Leontien.nl contract deal
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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Pooley relieved at AA Drink-Leontien.nl contract deal

by VeloNation Press at 8:08 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Olympic medal contender stresses importance of retaining current bike supplier

Emma PooleyAfter several months of uncertainty about her team setup, the 2010 world time trial champion Emma Pooley has spoken of her relief at moving to the AA Drink-Leontien.nl setup for 2012 and also being able to remain with the same equipment supplier she has used in recent seasons.

She was one of six riders from last year’s Garmin-Cervélo team who were yesterday announced as moving to the Dutch team. Lizzie Armistead, Lucy Martin, Sharon Laws, Carla Ryan and Jessie Daams will also transfer across to the squad, which has eight other riders in place for 2012.

The deal has been rumoured for several weeks and was officially confirmed yesterday. Pooley had declined to comment on her plans until this point, but is now able to give a reaction.

“I'm very happy to be on the AA Drink-Leontien team, and also very very happy to be able to continue to ride Cervélo bikes,” she told VeloNation today. “That's a real weight off my mind in the Olympic year as I can be sure I'm on the best bike possible, especially for the time trial. Cervélo's smallest frame fits me so well.”

As a British rider, Pooley will be competing on home soil in the Olympic Games. She was second in Beijing in 2008 and is determined to chase gold, although she’d doubtlessly prefer the course to be hillier. She has told VeloNation that the London 2012 Games and the world championships are her main targets for the season, and having her preferred bike setup will ensure that there’s minimal disruption for her.

The transfer deal will see the Slipstream management company paying the six contracted riders’ salaries for 2012. The company has an ongoing contract with Cervélo and under the terms of the agreement, the entire AA Drink-Leontien.nl squad will use the bikes this year.

Pooley declined to comment on how things had played out in recent months.

Slipstream CEO Jonathan Vaughters has blamed French company BigMat, who he said had agreed to come on board as a secondary sponsor for the Garmin team, but instead committed to the FDJ squad.

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