RadioShack will ride the Tour of the Gila again, Armstrong start likely
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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

RadioShack will ride the Tour of the Gila again, Armstrong start likely

by VeloNation Press at 6:39 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 

RadioShack manager Johan Bruyneel has confirmed that he will bring a team to this year's Tour of the Gila in New Mexico.  Last year while riding for the Astana team seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, along with teammates Levi Leipheimer and Chris Horner, made a surprise appearance in the event.  The five-day stage race was used by the American to ease back into racing before his first participation in the Giro d'Italia following his collarbone break in March.

"I'm happy to announce that we've added another race to the calendar. As they say, "back by popular demand" - The SRAM Tour of Gila," Bruyneel said on his blog.

Last week Armstrong was forced to pull out of the Circuit de la Sarthe because of illness, and took a plane home to Texas. He was using the four-day race as part of his preparation for the Tour de France this July.  Now it looks like the Tour of the Gila will once again be a part of his schedule.

"It's a late addition, but we need to get some of our Americans racing before the Amgen Tour of California," Bruyneel continued.  "Plus, it's a race that SRAM has put a lot of support behind, so we're happy that it fits within our schedule to support them and cycling in the US. So look for us at the end of the month in New Mexico."

While the Belgian didn't name the team that will be taking part in the race, he would be an obvious choice given the circumstances.  He is currently in the US, short on race miles and has confirmed that he will be racing the Tour of California.

Last year the three riders were required to ride in the event on an individual basis due to International Cycling Union (UCI) regulations that prevent ProTour teams from competing in national-level races.

A UCI spokesman told the Telegraph at the time: "It was actually the UCI who told USA Cycling about the existence of a rule within their own regulations, which allows three riders from the same professional team to compete wearing neutral jerseys.  USA Cycling was unaware of this."

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