Tour de France organiser Amaury Sport Organisation has announced the list of 20 teams selected to take part in this year’s race in July.

There are no major surprises on the list. One omission is the Fuji-Servetto team – the squad formerly known as Saunier Duval. It’s no great shock that ASO have not sent an invite to the outfit given that Saunier’s Leonardo Piepoli and Riccardo Ricco both failed tests for banned blood booster CERA (EPO) during the 2008 event.

As expected, another omission is the Barloworld squad, home of British riders Geraint Thomas, Steve Cummings and Chris Froome.

However, Britain should be well represented at the Tour with the teams of David Millar, Bradley Wiggins (Garmin-Slipstream), Mark Cavendish (Columbia-Highroad), Charly Wegelius (Silence-Lotto), Roger Hammond, Daniel Lloyd, Jeremy Hunt and Daniel Fleeman (Cervelo Test Team) all present.

Cavendish was the sprint sensation of last year’s Tour, winning no less than four stages in the race. Can he better that tally at this year’s event?

Making a return to the race is the Astana squad – home now of Tour de France winners Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador. The team was not invited last year due to its involvement in doping scandals during the 2007 Tour that saw the entire squad ejected from the race.

It is no surprise that France is the most represented nation, with five teams invited to the start line in Monaco on Saturday, July 4. The race finishes three weeks later in Paris on Sunday, July 26.

Each squad consists of nine riders, bringing the total number of participants in the race to 180.

GERMANY

Team Milram

BELGIUM

Quickstep

Silence-Lotto

DENMARK

Team Saxo Bank

SPAIN

Caisse d?Epargne

Euskaltel-Euskadi

UNITED STATES

Garmin-Slipstream

Team Columbia-High Road

FRANCE

AG2R-La Mondiale

Agritubel

BBox Bouygues Telecom

Cofidis, Le Crédit en Ligne

Française des Jeux

ITALY

Lampre-NGC

Liquigas

KAZAKHSTAN

Astana

NETHERLANDS

Rabobank

Skil-Shimano

RUSSIA

Team Katusha

SWITZERLAND

Cervelo Test Team


TOUR DE FRANCE 2009 LINKS

2009 Tour de France: The route

Brits in the 2009 Tour de France

Tour de France 2009: Week-by-week guide

Tour spectators’ guide

9 reasons why Mont Ventoux is a symbolic climb

Analysis: Mont Ventoux to decide the Tour

Inside the Tour: 2009 race by numbers

Etape du Tour 2009: It’s the Ventoux

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