Hincapie psyched by move to BMC
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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Hincapie psyched by move to BMC

by Conal Andrews at 4:24 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 

Following many years with the USPS/Discovery Channel and Columbia HTC teams, George Hincapie’s move to the BMC setup initially looked like it was a slight step down. However the subsequent signing of riders such as world champion Cadel Evans showed that the US squad is very much in the running for the world’s biggest races, both in terms of participation and results.

“Coming to this team, I am very excited by the growth potential it has over the next two or three years,” Hincapie said, showing his enthusiasm for the new career direction. “I’m excited to grow with the team, and I am confident that we have the experienced staff to guide the group; we’ll certainly be well taken care of.”

BMC Racing is co-owned by two highly experienced figures in cycling, Andy Rihs and Jim Ochowicz, while Gavin Chilcott is the general manager and John Lelangue the main directeur sportif.

The riders are currently training hard in advance of the new season, and Hincapie is preparing for his first race, which will take place in just over one months’ time in Australia.

“I’m happy to be starting off my season at the Tour Down Under since I’ve enjoyed that race in the past,” he said. “It gives us a good chance to race in some warm weather.

“Having Cadel on the team roster for that race too, especially since he is the World Road Champion, will make it special.”

Both riders are aiming to peak later, but will back their team-mates in aiming to take an early win. “Evans’ goals are pretty clear later in the season, and the parcours doesn’t really suit him,” Hincapie explained. “My goals come a little later in the spring too, but we’ll certainly have some guys heading there to get results.”

Amongst those assisting the 36 year old American is Noel Dejonckheere. He has been signed as assistant directeur sportif and also has a long history in the sport, having worked with Hincapie when he was a young rider.

“It’s funny because George Hincapie is one of the first young guys I started out training in the early days, and now here I am back with him again and he is one of the veterans,” Dejonckheere said.

There’s another parallel too, namely the link between his current team and one of the first big US squads to compete in Europe. “I can see strong similarities between BMC now and Motorola when we had the veterans like Hampsten, Phinney, and Yates guiding the young crop of guys which included Armstrong and Hincapie.”

Now Hincapie is in the guiding role, helping the next batch of riders to come through. He isn’t there simply as a mentor, though; he will be very much aiming to add to his own palmares in the months ahead, chasing more big results in European and US races.

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