Gallery: Katusha riders in Moscow, strong 2012 lineup launched
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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Gallery: Katusha riders in Moscow, strong 2012 lineup launched

by Shane Stokes at 4:05 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Holczer says he’ll walk from Paris to Moscow if Menchov can win Tour de France

Oscar FreireKatusha manager Hans Michael Holczer has said that he will take on a massive personal project if one of the new signings to the team can pull off what would be a major coup for the team.

“In my 10 years with Gerolsteiner we never had a Tour winner so if Menchov wins in my first year with Katusha, I promise to walk all the way from Paris to Moscow,” he told Reuters at yesterday’s team launch in Moscow.

The comment was tongue in cheek, but Menchov will do his best to put the German on the spot in July, vowing to try to top the podium. “In my career I've won just about everything else except the Tour,” he said. “I've been close a couple of times, reached the podium...but you always dream of getting to the top. Having that yellow jersey is what really matters.”

He knows that a victory there would make him a national legend in his country, and also seal his place in the sports history. “It's the biggest race in cycling and the toughest to win,” he said. “In the Giro and Vuelta you usually have only two or three guys with a realistic chance for the overall title. In the Tour every year you have at least five or six contenders, making it very difficult to win. It's like climbing Mount Everest - if you reach the summit, you are on top of the world.”

The 2012 lineup was unveiled in Moscow and also features triple world road race champion Oscar Freire, 2010 UCI WorldTour champion Joaquim Rodriguez and other strong riders. The lineup suggests the strongest year yet is in store; the riders will do their utmost to ensure that potential turns into results, and that the champagne is spraying in the months ahead.

A full gallery is available from yesterday’s launch; click on the first image below to advance to that section.

Also see: Katusha team launched with big ambitions in Moscow  


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