Ljungqvist signs as Director for Team Sky
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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Ljungqvist signs as Director for Team Sky

by Steve Jones at 12:07 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
After retiring as a professional cyclist earlier this month at Paris-Tours, Marcus Ljungqvist has become the latest sports director recruit for Britain's new Team Sky. The team has been on a roll lately bringing valuable experience on board to try to ensure a successful debut in 2010.

The 34-year-old Swede rode as a professional for 12 years, and is Senior Sports Director Scott Sunderland's latest grab from Bjarne Riis' Team CSC/Saxo Bank dynasty. Sky signed Norweigian Kurt-Asle Arvesen from Riis' team just a few days ago. Arvesen had been a valuable road captain for Saxo Bank over the years which makes him a key signing for the new squad.

It's obvious that David Brailsford, Team Principal for the British team, has great trust in Sunderland's personnel decisions as they work together to build cycling's next Mega-Team.

"We are really pleased to have Marcus on board with us and he will work well with Scott and Steven. The guys know the cycling world inside out and will be able to bring invaluable knowledge with them to the team. We have been busy this summer putting together the right group of people and building a broad team; we are in great shape."

The key to any team's success is making sure that the management and riders are all on the same page, something that seems off to a great start between Brailsford and Sunderland. The fact that the Australian has been able to pluck individuals from the Saxo Bank team speaks highly of his rapport with staff.

Ljungqvist is thrilled to be back working with Sunderland on this new project.

"I’m very excited about my new career move," said Ljungqvist. "Just a couple of weeks ago I was still a rider and had some tough decisions to make about my future. Then this opportunity came along and I immediately thought ‘yes!’

"This is a fantastic possibility for me and I can't wait to be a part of one of the most exiting things ever to happen in professional cycling. I’ve been involved in the sport for my whole life – the last 12 years as a professional – and it’s great that I can stay involved with a sport that I love and use my knowledge and experience to help develop Team Sky."

Team Sky's first race will be the 2010 the Tour Down Under, and hopes to gain an invitation to next year’s Tour de France.

To date, Team Sky has signed 16 riders for the new team with more to be announced.

Riders for 2010:

Kurt-Asle Arvesen
John Lee Augustyn
Edvald Boasson Hagen
Kjell Carlstrom
Steve Cummings
Russell Downing
Juan Antonio Flecha
Chris Froome
Simon Gerrans
Greg Henderson
Pete Kennaugh
Thomas Lovkvist
Lars Petter Nordhaug
Morris Possoni
Ian Stannard
Geraint Thomas

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