Tour de l'Ain: Karsten Kroon leads BMC Racing, Cole House makes his debut
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Sunday, August 08, 2010

Tour de l'Ain: Karsten Kroon leads BMC Racing, Cole House makes his debut

by VeloNation Press at 11:03 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
American-Swiss team sends a mix of youth and experience

Karsten KroonKarsten Kroon will be leading the BMC Racing team at the Tour de l'Ain this week, and begin the race ready to get his 2010 season back on track.  The Dutchman started the Ardennes Classics well, finishing ninth in the Amstel Gold Race, but his season was stopped in its tracks following a heavy crash in Flèche Wallonne a few days later.

While the American team saw their world champion Cadel Evans take the mid-week victory, Kroon was rushed to the hospital with a broken nose, cheekbone and sinus bone on the right side of his face.  He had originally planned to return to the peloton at the Tour of California, but his recovery took longer than expected.

Kroon began to rebuild his form in early June at the GP Kanton Aargau-Gippingen, and went on to ride the Tour de Suisse, his national championships and the Tour de France.  His BMC-Racing team will now rally around the 34 year old for the five-day French race.

"It is not a race where you have to have a big strategy around controlling the field because every team only has six riders," explained sports director John Lelange.  He's confident that the Dutchman will be in the mix for the overall.

The race will also see the debut of stagiaire Cole House.  The 22 year old recently won a stage of the International Cycling Classic, and was brought onto the team this month.  House is reportedly the first Native American to reach this level of cycling.  Last year he became the first American to win the G.P. Waregem, and has shown steady progress.

"It's a good experience for him and for him to see where we is and what we can expect in the future," said Lelangue. "The most important thing is for him to get experience on this level."

Team president Jim Ochowicz sees this as House's chance to prove he deserves a professional contract.

The race starts Tuesday August 10th with a short, 3 kilometer prologue through the streets of Ambérieu-en-Bugey.

BMC Racing for the 2010 Tour de L'Ain:
Chris Barton (USA)
Cole House (USA)
Karsten Kroon (NED)
Steve Morabito (SUI)
John Murphy (USA)
Martin Kohler (SUI)

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