Rabobank brings a strong team to the Tour de France
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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Rabobank brings a strong team to the Tour de France

by VeloNation Press at 11:37 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France

Team Rabobank has announced the nine riders that will make up their Tour de France squad. There is no surprise in the fact that Giro d'Italia winner Denis Menchov will lead the team's overall aspirations. The Russian will aim for a win in the only Grand Tour missing from his palmares with the full support of his Dutch team.

"Denis Menchov is our absolute leader," said team manager Erik Breukink.

Three-time world champion Oscar Freire will be their man for the sprints, as the Spaniard tries to avoid bad luck and secure his first win in the green jersey competition. Rabobank will be focused on the overall campaign, but Freire has shown he can fend for himself and win bunch sprint. His job will be tougher this year with an on form Mark Cavendish having the best leadout in the business able softening up the finish line for him. To have a chance against the Brit, the former world champion will likely have to look to his superior climbing abilities to help him grab intermediate sprints along the way.

Robert Gesink will be the team's man for the young rider competition. The Dutchman has shown he can climb with the big guns, and they will bank on him gaining time on his favorite terrain to secure the white jersey.

The rest of the team is full of riders that can perform well under pressure, and are a threat for the stage win on any given day. Laurens ten Dam, Stef Clement, Joost Posthuma, Juan Antonio Flecha, Juan Manuel Garate, and Grischa Niermann have all proven their worth to the team, with some building back their form for the Tour after a strong Spring Classics campaign.

Rabobank team for the 2009 Tour de France:

Denis Menchov, Robert Gesink (Ned), Laurens ten Dam (Ned), Stef Clement (Ned), Joost Posthuma (Ned), Oscar Freire (Spa), Juan Antonio Flecha (Spa), Juan Manuel Garate (Spa), Grischa Niermann (Ger)


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