Argos-Shimano eyeing Laurens ten Dam for 2014
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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Argos-Shimano eyeing Laurens ten Dam for 2014

by Ben Atkins at 5:39 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
 
Dutch team looking at general classification ambitions to add its sprint train

laurens ten damArgos-Shimano is looking to sign Laurens ten Dam for 2014, according to Dutch new site AD.nl. The 32-year-old climber currently rides for Belkin Pro Cycling - having been with the team that was Rabobank since 2008 - but, despite the team’s new sponsor committing through the end of 2015, the budget is lower than that in the Rabobank days. Ten Dam is reportedly to start negotiations with his current team next week, but may be open to offers elsewhere.

Ten Dam is currently fourth in the general classification of the Tour de France, just 1’50” behind Maillot Jaune Chris Froome (Team Sky), and just six seconds behind Belkin team leader Bauke Mollema. His best finish in the Tour to date was 22nd in his 2008 debut - when he was the best Dutchman - but finished eighth in last year’s Vuelta a España when able to ride the entire race for himself.

As a 21-year-old Ten Dam joined the Rabobank under-23 team, but turned profession in 2004 for Bankgiroloterij, before spending a year at Shimano-Memory Corp and two at Unibet.com. He returned to Rabobank, and the WorldTour team, in 2008, where he has remained ever since.

The signing of ten Dam would mean a sea change for Argos-Shimano, since it doesn’t currently have a rider for the general classification of major races. Currently built around the sprint talents of Marcel Kittel - who is currently the only sprinter to have taken two stages in this year’s Tour - and John Degenkolb, the ambitious Dutch team would surely need to sign further riders to support ten Dam, which could potentially have an impact on the potency of its sprint train.

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