Taylor Phinney signs pro deal with BMC Racing Team
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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Taylor Phinney signs pro deal with BMC Racing Team

by Shane Stokes at 4:48 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
US time trial champion signs contract with squad of Evans and Hincapie

Taylor PhinneyTop American talent Taylor Phinney has signed his first professional contract with the BMC Racing Team, choosing the squad over the RadioShack team with which he is currently on trial.

Contact between the 20 year old and the team has been ongoing for quite some time but, following his win in the US Elite time trial championships on Saturday, the deal was finalised yesterday.

A person close to the team confirmed to VeloNation that he had signed with the team, and that a formal announcement would be made sometime today. BMC Racing Team directeur sportif John Lelangue could not be reached for comment.

Phinney will line out alongside the 2009 world road race champion Cadel Evans, 2008 champ Alessandro Ballan and 2009 US road race champion George Hincapie on the team, and will be able to draw upon their experience as he learns and develops.

Phinney has had a superb season, most recently winning the US Elite time trial championships by 14 hundredths of a second ahead of Levi Leipheimer, 13 days after dominating the prologue of the Tour de l’Avenir. Earlier this year, he took his second consecutive UCI individual pursuit world championship gold medal and under 23 Paris-Roubaix title; other wins include stage Stage 2b of Le Triptyque de Monts et Châteaux, stage 4 of the Tour of the Gila, as well as the prologue, three stages plus the overall of the Olympias Tour.

Unsurprisingly, he was offered a trial with Team RadioShack, moving up as a stagiaire from the Trek-Livestrong feeder squad. That brought almost instant success when Phinney won the prologue and stage three of the Tour of Utah, although UCI rules meant he had to ride the race in the Trek-Livestrong jersey. Since then, his showings in L’Avenir and the US championships have proven that he is already one of the best time trialists in the sport.

Phinney had been expected by many to sign a full pro contract with the RadioShack team. However he started discussions with other squads, reportedly because he was concerned that the team has just one year of guaranteed backing left.

He indicated in several interviews that he wanted long-term security, and not to have to start looking again towards the end of next season.

While the duration of his contract is not yet known, the deal will be for at least two seasons. It had been previously rumoured that BMC Racing was prepared to offer him up to four years.

More details will be released later today, including a reaction from both Phinney and the team.

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