Eight Endura riders sign for new NetApp – Endura collaboration
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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Eight Endura riders sign for new NetApp – Endura collaboration

by VeloNation Press at 6:04 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Downing, Voss and Wetterhall amongst those transferring

Russell DowningFresh from helping Jonathan Tiernan Locke win the Tour of Britain, Russell Downing [pictured], Paul Voss, Zak Dempster and Jonathan McEvoy plus four of their current Endura team-mates have been confirmed as moving to the Pro Continental ranks next season.

The quartet plus Iker Camano Ortuzar, Erick Rowsell, Scott Thwaites and Alexander Wetterhall will race for Team NetApp – Endura in 2013, moving up a level with the new-look team.

The move comes in tandem with Endura’s transfer across as a second title sponsor to the German team, with the merger of sorts producing a bigger, stronger overall structure.

“The quality of the individual riders is a boost for us. Their success throughout the entire season on the Europe Tour speaks for itself,” said team manager Ralph Denk, in announcing the new signings. “The fact that the core of this very successful team is remaining intact and switching over to us gives us an important advantage for next season.”

The NetApp team made a major step up this year when it secured a wildcard to race in the Giro d’Italia, and went close to two stage wins. Bartosz Huzarski and Jan Barta finished second on stages ten and fourteen.

Its 2012 victories include Barta’s TT win and overall success in the Settimana Coppi e Bartali as well as the squad’s team time trial success there; it also took the Rund um Koln with Barta, the GP Stad Zottegem with Matthias Brandle plus Leopold König’s stage six win in last week’s Tour of Britain.

At least three more signings are expected to the team but as of now, Barta, Huzarski and König are amongst the riders all returning in 2013.

For Downing, the news will be particularly appreciated. He was part of Team Sky in 2010 and 2011 and was disappointed not to be kept on, as he explained earlier this year. The 2009 Tour of Ireland now has a second shot at some of the biggest races in the calendar and will be psyched to show again what he can do.

As for Tiernan Locke, he will leave Endura Racing after being handed a WorldTour contact. It is thought all but certain that he will be part of Team Sky next year. His Tour of Britain team-mates are heading in a different direction, but proved in that race that they are well capable of scrapping with top level teams.

Team NetApp – Endura 2013 (as of September 17, 2012):

Jan Barta (27, CZE), Cesare Benedetti (25, ITA), Iker Camano Ortuzar (33, ESP), Zakkari Dempster (24, AUS), Russell Downing (34, GBR), Markus Eichler (30, GER), Bartosz Huzarski (31, POL), Blaz Jarc (24, SLO), Leopold Koenig (24, CZE), Jonathan McEvoy (23, GBR), Erick Rowsell (22, GBR), Andreas Schillinger (29, GER), Daniel Schorn (23, AUT), Michael Schwarzmann (21, GER), Scott Twaites (22, GBR), Paul Voss (26, GER), Alexander Wetterhall (26, SWE)


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