The transfer window is closing with many riders still job-hunting for the 2014 season. Neo-pros, big stars and several Euskaltel and Vacansoleil-DCM cyclists are signing or searching for contracts.
The Yates twins, Adam and Simon, made their move from the amateur ranks to Orica-GreenEdge official yesterday. “[Climbing and classification riding] is an area we really want to develop within the team,” said general manager, Shayne Bannan in a press release yesterday. The team reportedly also signed Jhoan Esteban Chaves from team Colombia. New under-23 time trial champion, Damien Howson is also joining the Aussie team.
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Matej Mohoric, the first rider to win the junior and under-23 World Champion titles back to back, signed with Cannondale. The team announced mid-August that the Slovenian and Italians Davide Villella, Davide Formolo and Alberto Bettiol all signed two-year contracts to start their professional careers.
Two big stars – world number 12, Chris Horner and number 16, Michele Scarponi – are without contracts for 2014. Horner became the oldest Grand Tour winner at 41, last month at the Vuelta a España. He said that he wants to race for another two years but still has no deal with current team RadioShack-Leopard.
Scarponi won the GP Etruschi two weeks ago, the 2011 Giro d’Italia by default and placed top five in three other Giros. The 34-year-old Italian is meeting with team Lampre this week to renew. “He’s not super young – for sure he’s not going to racing and winning the Vuelta at 41 like Horner,” his agent, Raimondo Scimone told Cycling Weekly. “To go and look for a new team, it’s not something he really wants to do.”
Euskaltel and Vacansoleil-DCM
Many of Euskaltel’s and Vacansoleil-DCM’s riders have yet to find a team after their squads announced a good-bye to cycling. Team Movistar announced today that Ion Izaguirre will join in 2014 and race alongside brother Gorka, who it signed earlier. Ion finished second overall in the Tour of Poland and last year, won a stage of the Giro d’Italia.
Mikel Landa joins Astana. Reportedly, Mikel Nieve will race with Sky and Igor Antón with Lampre. Around 20 of its riders are still without deals for 2014, including former Olympic Champion Samuel Sánchez.
The situation is not much better at Dutch team Vacansoleil. RadioShack, which becomes Trek next season, announced two days ago that it signed brothers Boy and Danny Van Poppel to its development team. Fabio Felline, from team Androni, also joins. Jan Bakelants, stage winner and yellow jersey wearer at the Tour de France, leaves RadioShack for Omega Pharma.
Vacansoleil’s Lieuwe Westra heads to Astana. Marco Marcato and possibly Johnny Hoogerland will ride with Cannondale. Several other Vacansoleil riders – Thomas De Gendt, Björn Leukemans and Juan Antonio Flecha – are said to be negotiating with new second division team, Wanty.
Ivan Basso, who rides for Cannondale, wants out of his contract according to La Gazzetta dello Sport. He could join Saxo Bank or Astana.