Jonathan Vaughters will officially unveil the roster for his 2009 Garmin-Chipotle team at a presentation in Boulder, Colorado, on Saturday night.
The squad enjoyed a successful first year in 2008, garnering a lot of positive media attention – if not a huge selection of major wins. The highlights of the year were undoubtedly Christian Vande Velde’s fifth place in the Tour de France and the squad’s victory in the opening team time trial of the Giro d’Italia, which saw Vande Velde wearing the pink leader’s jersey.
Although the team were ranked as a Continental Professional outfit, invites to several major races saw them come head-to-head with the ProTour squads. From 2009, the Union Cycliste Internationale has awarded Garmin-Chipotle a four-year ProTour license – meaning automatic invites to the ProTour races.
Team manager Vaughters has been busy over the past few months, and has added several more bigs names to his squad for next season. Britain’s David Millar returns, and is joined by Olympic gold medallist Bradley Wiggins – from Team Columbia – to strengthen the squad’s credentials further.
It is hard to find a squad with more of a collective pedigree against the clock – Millar, Wiggins, Vande Velde and David Zabriskie are all strong time triallists and will combine to be a formidable force in next year’s Tour de France team time trial on stage four. We wouldn’t bet against seeing a Garmin rider in the coveted yellow leader’s jersey in the first week of the Tour.
From the outset, Vaughters’ squad has shown a strong anti-doping ethic, and it was one of the first teams to embrace an independent anti-doping test system, undertaken in 2008 by Agency for Cycling Ethics (ACE). When ACE folded a few weeks ago, Vaughters vowed to quickly put in place a replacement system – he is due to announce who will be doing this at the weekend’s team event.
Garmin-Chipotle’s 2009 racing campaign starts at the Tour Down Under on January 20.
GARMIN-CHIPOTLE 2009 ROSTER
Magnus Backstedt (Sweden)
Blake Caldwell (USA)
Steven Cozza (USA)
Tom Danielson (USA)
Hans Dekkers (Netherlands) – from Mitsubishi Jartazi
Julian Dean (NZ)
Jason Donald (USA)
Timothy Duggan (USA)
Huub Duyn (Netherlands)
Lucas Euser (USA)
Tyler Farrar (USA)
Michael Friedman (USA)
Will Frischkorn (USA)
Ryder Hesjedal (Canada)
Trent Lowe (Australia)
Martijn Maaskant (Netherlands)
Daniel Martin (Ireland)
Christian Meier (Canada) neo-pro
Cameron Meyer (Australia) from SouthAustralia-AIS
David Millar (GB)
Danny Pate (USA)
Kilian Patour (France)
Thomas Peterson (USA)
Chris Sutton (Australia)
Svein Tuft (Canada) from Symmetrics
Ricardo Van der Velde (Netherlands) from Rabobank Continental team
Christian Vande Velde (USA)
Bradley Wiggins (GB) from Columbia
David Zabriskie (USA)
Leaving the team
Christophe Laurent – to Agritubel
Jon Patrick McCarty