Kai Reus linked to United Healthcare for 2012
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Friday, September 30, 2011

Kai Reus linked to United Healthcare for 2012

by VeloNation Press at 4:20 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Former world junior champion considering signing for American Pro Continental team

Kai ReusFollowing the news that he will return to the pro ranks in 2012, Kai Reus is reported to be studying the terms of an offer with the American UnitedHealthcare team, and is likely to make a decision in the very near future.

Reus confirmed in recent days that a team had approached him for next season. “It’s a nice offer, but unfortunately I cannot say which team it is,” he told TV Noord-Holland. “The old Kai Reus is still there and I will go for it one hundred percent.”

The rider has long-running links to Rabobank, having competed there as a youth rider and then as a professional (pictured) until he walked away from the sport last year. However the team confirmed to VeloNation that the offer he was considering was not from them. It was rumoured that Skil-Shimano were courting his signature but, according to De Telegraaf, it’s the American team which is now front runner to bring him on board.

It quotes the team’s European directeur sportif, Hendrik Redant, as saying that he

“Last winter I saw how fanatical Kai was with marathon speed skating and this summer how he raced with so much pleasure with De Rijke. The talent of Reus is definitely not lost. I hope that it’s going to come round.”

Reus retired from the sport last summer after some difficult years. In 2007, he crashed during his first pro season, suffered head injuries and ended up in a coma. He won a stage and finished fourth overall in the 2009 Tour of Britain, but then contracted mononucleosis and struggled to find his best form. Those frustrations caused him to decide to leave the sport, although he didn’t rule out eventually returning.

After returning to his childhood sport of speed skating, he physically and mentally recharged his batteries and decided to return. He started racing again in the Dutch national time trial championships at the end of June and finished a very solid 13th out of 40 riders. In August Reus won stage one of the Tour de Mi Aout en Bretagne with the small De Rijke team, showing that his comeback is progressing well.

Now he’s ready to move to Pro Continental level. De Telegraaf points out that his friend Marc de Maar will also race there in 2012, and this should help him settle in if he decides to put his signature to the contract.

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