Silence-Lotto changes name, again - Dekker fired
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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Silence-Lotto changes name, again - Dekker fired

by Nick Mulder at 10:43 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling

The Belgian Silence-Lotto team held a press conference today to announce a change in their co-sponsor brand. From 2010 onwards, the team will be known as Omega Pharma-Lotto. The pharmaceutical company will look to benefit from extra publicity with its name on Cadel Evans’ new World Champion jersey.

“In the past we always took a brand name from our rich collection of products that Omega Pharma has to offer. Now we chose to include the name of our group in the picture, that’s why the team will be called Omega-Pharma Lotto in 2010. The clothing will take on a totally different color, for the exact design we still have to talk with the National Lottery,” Omega Pharma director Marc Coucke said to Sporza.

Omega Pharma-Lotto will be the fourth name change for the team, previously known as Davitamon -Lotto in 2005 and 2006, and Predictor-Lotto in 2007. Silence-Lotto drew heavy criticism after a relatively unsuccessful year, Evans however, redeemed his team’s reputation when he won the World Championships last Sunday.

Evans’ win was celebrated during the press conference in the Belgian city of Nazareth. The Australian, a big fan of Tintin, received a 1942 edition of the cartoon series as a present from Coucke.

Silence-Lotto was in the news for the wrong reasons yesterday with the announcement of Thomas Dekker’s positive B-sample, a surprise that seemed to set the stage for Evans’ poor Tour de France performance earlier this year. However, it should be noted that Dekker’s test was taken when he was riding for the Rabobank team. Unfortunately, the scandal has left an undeserving stain on the Belgian team.

With yesterday's news, team manager Marc Sergeant has announced that Dekker has been fired from the team.

"After we found out his positive result in July we put him on the non-active list," Sergeant told

"Now the second analysis proves that he has taken banned substances and we have no other choice but to end our collaboration."

Dekkers Lawyer Hans Van Oijen said in a press release Wednesday, "Thomas Dekker regrets his mistake; he will apologise and be held accountable, where possible."  The young Dutchman has said he will make a return to the sport.


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