Euskaltel re-signs top talents, Igor Anton and Romain Sicard
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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Euskaltel re-signs top talents, Igor Anton and Romain Sicard

by Jered Gruber at 7:57 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
While the future of Samuel Sanchez remains in the air, the Basque team keeps its young talents in orange

The Euskaltel Euskadi team has announced the extensions of two of its top young riders, Igor Anton and Romain Sicard. Both Anton and Sicard will race with the team until at least 2012. 

Team manager, Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano, was pleased to keep the two top talents in orange for the coming two seasons and says that they are "two of the great talents" within the team and that their continuing with the team "is great news for all fans of Euskaltel Euskadi."

Romain Sicard won both the 2009 Tour de l'Avenir and the U23 World Championship road race in Mendrisio to cap off a dream season. His enormous end of season successes did not go unnoticed, and the French Basque signed for Euskaltel for 2010, continuing the progression upward from the Euskaltel feeder team, Orbea. 2010 has been a year of learning with some good results mixed in as well - Sicard can count a 2nd place on Stage 4 of the Dauphine along with 11th overall at the Dauphine and 10th overall at the Bayern Rundfahrt as evidence of the potential the 22 year old possesses.

Sicard was "very pleased" with the agreement. "They have trusted me at Euskaltel, both when they welcomed me into the Orbea Continental team [as a U23 rider], and then when they afforded me the chance to turn professional with Euskaltel Euskadi. I have always been supported to continue learning and progressing in this team. I feel very comfortable here. It's one of the best teams in the world, and I have confidence in the squad. I can keep working and maturing as a cyclist here. I have many things still to learn."

The 27 year old, Igor Anton, has had a breakout season in 2010 with stage wins at the Vuelta Castilla y Leon (where he left Contador in his wake) and the Tour de Romandie going nicely with scores of top placings including 4th at La Fleche Wallonne and 6th at Liege-Bastogne-Liege.

For Anton, the choice was simple. "Re-signing was a great joy. This is the team I've been a part of my whole life, and they've always invested heavily in me. I'm comfortable here, and it means a lot they have confidence in me and see my value. That's very important. For my part, I just need to continue to improve and reap the benefits of the work I've been doing."

While the team does its best to hold on to star rider, Samuel Sanchez, who is the object of a lot of attention among the sport's top teams, Euskaltel is also not neglecting the burgeoning ranks of talent within the team. Sicard and Anton are the latest signings after the announcement that talented young climber, Benat Intxausti, will also be returning next year.

The possibilities for the Basque team, even with one million euros less available in 2011, appear to be on the rise. If Sanchez signs for next year, the chances of a spot on the podium in Paris will be great, but the trio of Sicard, Anton, and Intxausti could lead to even more success in the future.



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