Stijn Devolder leaves Quick Step, bound for Vacansoleil
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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Stijn Devolder leaves Quick Step, bound for Vacansoleil

by VeloNation Press at 10:03 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Belgian champion will not be riding for Belgium's top team

Stijn DevolderNewly minted Belgian national champion Stijn Devolder will be leaving Patrick Lefevere's Quick Step outfit for the Vacansoleil team in 2011, according to the Gazet van Antwerpen.  The Dutch team said they were in advanced talks with the rider a week ago, and this latest news confirms what they told BN/De Stem, that they had indeed reached a personal agreement with the rider.

Devolder had been under a sharp criticism from Lefevere earlier this year after a lacklustre spring.  Things came to a head with the Quick Step boss when he failed to secure his third Ronde van Vlaanderen victory.

Devolder's form finally began to come around at the end of May, resulting in the overall victory at Tour of Belgium.  He was then able to peak again a month later and ride to his second road national championship title.

BMC Racing and RadioShack had both shown interest in signing the Belgian. A move to the latter would have seen him back together with the familiar management of the US Postal Service and Discovery Channel teams, where he rode from 2004 to 2007.

Vacansoleil is currently a Pro Continental team, but is said to be looking to move up to the ProTour level to gain automatic inclusion for the UCI World Calendar events.  Devolder will join Björn Leukemans and Johnny Hoogerland to add firepower to the team's spring Classics assault.

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