Teams for the 2010 Amgen Tour of California announced
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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Teams for the 2010 Amgen Tour of California announced

by Bjorn Haake at 3:10 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour of California

The organizers of the Amgen Tour of California have announced the 16 teams that will form the peloton for the week-long race. The event has been moved to May (16-23), which allows for a more selective route. Several passes that were not usable in the February time slot have been added and the quality of the expected riders is accordingly high.

"These teams, with the riders we expect to compete, represent one of the strongest fields we have had at the Amgen Tour of California. Our move to May means that we will have Tour de France contenders in prime form racing here in the Golden State," the president of organizer AEG Sports, Andrew Messick, said. "We also are pleased to have a selection of top North American-based Continental teams, who will have a chance to compete with some of the world's best riders."

Of course, three-time winner Levi Leipheimer wants to continue his successful run, banking on his new RadioShack team to provide him the necessary assistance, which includes seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong. The team has even decided to skip the Giro d'Italia in favor of racing on home soil.

HTC Columbia is bringing along sprint star Mark Cavendish, who is likely to pop up in front any time there is a bunch sprint. The team's owner, Bob Stapleton, was full of praise for the event. "In a few short years the Amgen Tour of California has become America's Grand Tour, one of our country's premier sporting events, and a showcase for the demanding and dramatic California landscape." The team wants it all. "We will contend for both the general classification and stage wins with top riders Michael Rogers, Mark Cavendish and an exceptional supporting cast of athletes," Stapleton added.

Tour de France runner-up Andy Schleck will use the mini Tour de France to build up for the Grande Boucle in July, alongside teammate Fabian Cancellara. The latter is on great form, having just won the Tour of Flanders for the first time in his career.

Other American teams include the Garmin Transitions outfit, which has the horse power to challenge Leipheimer for the overall victory. The BMC squad also races on home soil and brings the experienced George Hincapie, who finished sixth in the Tour of Flanders last Sunday.

Other European teams that bring individuals who can take out a stage or even have a shot at the overall include the Cervélo TestTeam, Liquigas-Doimo, Quick Step, and Rabobank.

The American continental teams are always motivated on home ground as well, so there should be no surprise to see riders wearing the Bissell, Jelly Belly, Team Type 1, United Healthcare or Kelly Benefit Strategies jersey in the breaks.

The Canadian Spidertech and the Australian Fly V teams complete the 128 rider-strong peloton. The Australians were quite pleased to get the invitation to California. "The entire Fly V Australia team is looking forward to going head-to-head with the best teams and riders in the world in the 2010 Amgen Tour of California," said Chris White, team director of Fly V Australia. "This is the biggest race of the year for our team and a great test for our riders."

The 2010 Amgen Tour of California roster includes the following 16 professional cycling teams:

Bissell (USA), BMC Racing Team (USA), Cervélo TestTeam (SUI), Fly V Australia (AUS), Garmin-Transitions (USA), Jelly Belly Presented by Kenda (USA), Kelly Benefit Strategies (USA), Liquigas-Doimo (ITA), Quick Step (BEL), Rabobank (NED), Spidertech Powered by Planet Energy (CAN), Team HTC-Columbia (USA), Team RadioShack (USA), Team Saxo Bank (DEN), Team Type 1 (USA), United Healthcare Presented by Maxxis (USA)


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