Daniel Martin, David Millar and Magnus Backstedt will lead a powerful Garmin-Chipotle team at the Tour of Ireland in late August and at the Tour of Britain in September race organizers announced on Monday.
Martin became the Irish national champion in June just a week after winning the Route du Sud stage race in France and will ride the five-day Tour of Ireland (August 27-31) wearing the green national champions jersey.
Millar will ride both the Tour of Ireland and eight-day Tour of Britain (September 7-14) as he builds up to the world time trial championships in Varese, Italy, while Backstedt will be hoping to have recovered from the lactic acid problem that forced him out of the Tour de France.
Also scheduled to be in the Garmin team are Kiwi sprinter Julian Dean, Frenchman Christophe Laurent and Dutchman Martijn Maaskant who impressed in this year?s Paris-Roubaix. Dean finished second overall in the 2004 Tour of Britain.
?I just can?t wait to get back to racing on Irish roads again. I know that a really hard course has been announced but the team is really motivated to do well,? Martin said in a press release from the Tour of Ireland organisers.
?There was a real fight to get into the team for this one but obviously being Irish champion helped me get in. The guys are excited to be coming to Ireland to race. We should be one of the strongest teams.?
Martin is not riding the Tour de France but faces a busy August, with the Tour of Portugal before the Tour of Ireland.
?I have got a heavy program in the next few weeks. The Portuguese Tour is 12 days long and it will be interesting to see how I cope with so much racing, but I will definitely be taking it a bit easier there and saving something for Ireland,? Martin said.
The Tour of Ireland starts in the Docklands area of Dublin on Wednesday August 27 and ends in Cork after passing through the spectacular Irish countryside. The Tour of Britain starts in central London and ends in Liverpool after stages spread across the country.