RadioShack roster filling up
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Monday, October 5, 2009

RadioShack roster filling up

by Nick Mulder at 4:43 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France

Lance Armstrong’s RadioShack team has already signed 23 names to its roster for 2010. Excluding Armstrong, 11 of the riders, including three time Tour of California winner Levi Leipheimer, are coming over from Astana, which leaves Tour de France champion Alberto Contador isolated on a mainly Kazakh team.

Armstrong acknowledged a strong team is critical if he intends to beat Contador next year, telling Velo Magazine, “Man to man, against Alberto it will be very hard to win." But in his bid for an eighth Tour crown the Texan has a plan he thinks will unseat the Spaniard, and allow him to regain the Tour de France throne. For Armstrong, the secret is showing up with more than one leader. "Me, Levi (Leipheimer), (Andreas) Klöden, (Haimar) Zubeldia, strong riders who can lead a team,” he added, will be what makes the difference next July.

The classics team for RadioShack will be lead by Belgians Gert Steegmans (Katusha) and Sebastian Rosseler (Quick Step), who can expect to find strong support from Gregory Rast and Thomas Vaitkus. Armstrong has given Trek-Livestrong riders, Sam Bewly and Bjorn Selander the chance to prove themselves in the pro ranks moving them up from his farm team.

There is speculation that individual pursuit World Champion and winner of the U23 Paris-Roubaix, Taylor Phinney, could be the next rider to make the jump from the Trek-Livestrong team over to “The Shack”. Another rider for the future that was brought on by manager Johan Bruyneel is Ben Hermans, who is dubbed one of Belgium’s brightest talents for the Ardennes classics.

From Astana team:
Lance Armstrong
Janez Brajkovic
Chris Horner
Andreas Klöden
Levi Leipheimer
Sergio Paulinho
Yaroslav Popovych
Gregory Rast
José Luis Rubiera
Thomas Vaitkus
Haimar Zubeldia

From other teams:
Gert Steegmans (Katusha)
Sebastian Rosseler (Quick Step)
Ben Hermans (Topsport Vlaanderen)
Ivan Rovny (Katusha)
Sam Bewley (Trek Livestrong)
Tiago Machado (Madeinox)
Geoffrey Lequatre (Agritubel)
Jaso McCartney (Saxo Bank)
Bjorn Selander (Trek Livestrong)
Matthew Busche (Kelly Benefit)
Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi)
Daryl Impey (Barloworld)


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