More news on the transfer front.
As expected, Ivan Dominguez of the disbanded Toyota-United team will be joining Rock Racing for the 2009 season. He told cyclingnews that teammates Caleb Manion, Chepe Garcia and Chris Baldwin will be joining him on the Michael Ball team. According to the El Colombiano site, 36-year old Santiago Botero decided to continue his cycling career for one more year after the birth of his daughter. He will be leaving the Rock Racing team and will stay closer to home, with either Colombia es Pasion or UNE-EPM, both Colombian teams.
The Garmin-Chipotle team has finalized its 29-rider ProTour roster for the 2009 season. Most of the riders are staying with only two deaprtures,Christophe Laurent going to the Agribubel team and Patrick McCarty. McCarty’s destination is unknown. The team is welcoming 6 new riders: Hans Dekkers from Mitsubishi-Jartarzki, the duo from the Symmetrics team, Canadian TT Champion Svein Tuft and Canadian Road Champion Chris Meier, Brad Wiggins from Team Columbia, Ricardo van der Velde from the Rabobank Continental team and Cameron Meyer from the SouthAustralia.com-AIS squad.
While not official yet, the VMG/Felt U23 team roster is also starting to take shape. According to cqranking, returning riders Kirk Carlsen, Dan Holloway, Peter Stetina and Daniel Summerill will be joined by American Alex Howes returning to the fold after one year in France and Raymond Kreder. In 2006, 16-year old Kreder won the first edition of the Pavé de Roubaix, the junior version of the Paris-Roubaix race. As was well publicised Taylor Phinney is joining the new Lance Armstrong U23 team.
Unfortunately another team announced that it would not continue in 2009. After three years on the circuit, the UCI Contintental Calyon Pro Cycling Team of Canada called it quits. The Calyon Bank, a subsidiary of the Groupe Crédit Agricole was hit badly by the economic crisis and decided to stop the team sponsorship. The 2008 team was made up of Matthew Bell, David Bergeron, Matthew Guse, Michael Norton, Mathieu Roy and brothers Maxime and Charly Vivès. Bell will be joining the Volkswagen team next year.
With the disappearance of the Symmetrics and Calyon team, the only Canadian team to continue with the UCI Continental status next year is Team R.A.C.E. Pro. For its second year, the team under the leadership of Steve Bauer and Josée Larocque strengthened its roster with the addition of friends Keven Lacombe and 2007 Pan American Road Race Champion Martin Gilbert, both from the Kelly Benefit/Medifast. Also joining the team are Eric Boily and Bruno Langlois from Volkswagen, Andrew Randell from Symmetrics, and the Vivès brothers. Returning to the team are François Parisien, Ryan Roth, Joël Dion-Poitras, Keir Plaice, Andrew Hunt and Mark Batty.
The team will focus on UCI races in Canada such as Tour de Beauce and the USA, and some occasional races in South America and Europe, and will work to get invited to the Tour of Missouri and Tour de Georgia if it happens. The team has a long term goal to become a Canadian force to be reckoned with at international UCI races, with a goal to reach the Tour de France in 2012.
“Longer term, the goal is to increase the level every year to eventually make it to the Tour de France.” said Bauer to La Presse. “The vision is clear. I am aiming for the top.”
Lastly, NorCal’er Flavia Oliveira will be joining the Italian UCI team Michela Fanini Record Rox