Paris-Nice selects 22 teams for the 2010 edition
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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Paris-Nice selects 22 teams for 2010

by VeloNation Press at 7:59 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Paris-Nice

The Amaury Sports Organization (ASO) announced the twenty-two teams that will be taking part in Paris-Nice this coming March. The 68th edition of the "Race to the Sun" will see the number of teams increased by two over last year's count in order to give more teams an opportunity to prove themselves for Tour de France selection.

Race director Jean-Francois Pescheux explained that, "We want to see who the best teams are before making the selection [for the Tour de France]. It is a matter of sporting fairness."

Notably absent from the list is Team Milram, who announced the decision by organizers earlier today. However, the German ProTour team was told they could be certain of invites to the ASO's other major events, that include Classics such as Paris-Roubaix and Liège-Bastogen-Liège, along with key stage races like the Dauphiné Libéré and, most importantly, the Tour de France. The only other ProTour team that was left off the list is the Spanish Footon-Servetto-Fuji squad.

The American BMC Racing team's name was also missing from the list but, according to organizers, they decided not to apply for participation in the event.

This edition of the race includes several teams that will be making an appearance in the race for the first time. The start in Montfort l'Amaury will see Lance Armstrong's RadioShack team take the start without the seven-time Tour de France winner, but promises to bring a strong contingent to France. The new British Team Sky will also be making their debut in the race, and will be looking to impress the ASO to seal up an invite to give team leader Bradley Wiggins a shot for Tour glory in July.

Vacansoleil will also arrive in France with something to prove. With the Grand Départ taking place at home in Rotterdam, taking part in the Tour de France is a priority. After helping to animate the Tour last year, fellow Dutch team Skil-Shimano will be hoping to make their second consecutive Tour start.  With the competition for wildcard entries fierce, it's likely that one of the two Dutch teams will lose out.

The 22 teams selected for the 2010 Paris-Nice:
Belgium: Omega Pharma-Lotto, Quick Step
Denmark: Saxo Bank-Sungard
Spain: Caisse d'Epargne, Euskaltel-Euskadi
United States: Garmin-Transitions, HTC-Columbia, Team RadioShack
Great Britain: Team Sky
France: AG2R, Bbox Bouygues Telecom, Cofidis, FDJ, Saur-Sojasun
Italy: Lampre-Farnese Vini, Liquigas-Doimo
Kazakhstan: Astana
Netherlands: Rabobank, Skil-Shimano, Vacansoleil
Russia: Katusha
Switzerland: Cervélo TestTeam


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