Cofidis team all behind Rein Taaramäe in the Tour de France
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Monday, June 25, 2012

Cofidis team all behind Rein Taaramäe in the Tour de France

by Ben Atkins at 9:32 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
Estonian looking to better eleventh place of 2011; white jersey a possibility

samuel dumoulinThe Cofidis team has announced the names of the nine men that it will be sending to the Tour de France, which starts in the Belgian city of Liège on Saturday, June 30th. The team is one of four Professional Continental outfits awarded a wild card by the race organisation and, as a French team, the race forms the focus of its year. As usual, the team will be made up of a number of French opportunists, but the focus again this year will be on Estonian Rein Taaramäe, who finished eleventh last year.

Taaramäe, who successfully defended his national time trial title on Wednesday, was also involved in a tit-for-tat battle with Europcar’s Pierre Rolland for the white, young rider’s jersey. Rolland’s strong finish to the race, including his stage victory on Alpe d’Huez, saw him hold of Taaramäe to take the jersey in Paris; with both riders still eligible, we could see a similar battle this time.

Contesting the sprint finishes will be Samuel Dumoulin (pictured), who is hunting for his second stage victory in the race. The punchy 5’3” rider from the Rhone valley won his first race of the season this year - the GP d'Ouverture La Marseillaise - but, despite a string of podium places has yet to chalk up his second. What better stage to do so than the Tour de France.

Also seeking his first stage in many years will be four-time Vuelta a España mountain jersey winner David Moncoutié. The evergreen Moncoucou was considered a possible contender for the yellow jersey itself a few years ago, but will doubtless contrive to lose a lot of time in the first week, so as to be allowed the freedom to chase single day glory; or maybe even go for a polka-dot jersey from the Tour to go with his four from the Vuelta.

Doubtless keen to outdo Moncoutié though, will be fellow climbers Rémy Di Gregorio and Juan Angel Maté. Both will doubtless be charged with looking after Taaramäe, but much of this duty will likely involve jumping into breaks to make sure the Estonian’s rivals have to chase.

A predominantly young team is completed by Frenchmen Nicolas Edet and Julien Fouchard, and Belgians Jan Ghyselinck, and Romain Zingle; none of who is over 25 years old, and all bar Zingle is making his debut in the race.

Cofidis team for the Tour de France
Rémy Di Gregorio, Samuel Dumoulin, Nicolas Edet, Julien Fouchard, Jan Ghyselinck, Luis Angle Maté, David Moncoutié, Rein Taaramäe and Romain Zingle


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