Team Sky Presents Line-Up for 2012 Tour de France

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06/22/2012| 0 comments
by Mark Watson
Team Sky Procycling has announced its 2012 Tour de France roster. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.
Team Sky Procycling has announced its 2012 Tour de France roster. Photo Fotoreporter Sirotti.

Team Sky Presents Line-Up for 2012 Tour de France

Team Sky has revealed the team roster it has selected for this year's edition of pro road cycling's greatest race - the Tour de France.

Team Sky has revealed the team roster it has selected for this year's edition of pro road cycling's greatest race - the Tour de France.

The 2012 Tour de France starts in Liege, Belgium on June 30 and Team Sky will arrive in Liege highly focused on securing the overall Tour victory for Great Britain's Bradley Wiggins, who has delivered powerful performances throughout the Spring months.

Bradley Wiggins will lead the team after his consecutive victories at Paris-Nice, Tour of Romandie and Critérium du Dauphiné, and will be joined by Edvald Boasson Hagen, Mark Cavendish, Bernhard Eisel, Chris Froome, Christian Knees, Richie Porte, Michael Rogers and Kanstantsin Siutsou (high resolution image attached).

Team Sky Captain Bradley Wiggins has five Tour de France appearances behind him and, if he has managed to remain on the high point of his form curve, goes into this year's Tour de France in the form of his life having secured consecutive victories at Paris-Nice, Tour of Romandie and Critérium du Dauphiné this Spring.

"I'm really proud to be part of such a strong unit going into the Tour de France. The team's preparation has been perfectly managed and our form this season gives us a great chance of being successful," Wiggins told

"I've been waiting for this moment for a long time and I'll do everything I can to win the Tour de France. Hopefully we can do the business for ourselves and our fans, and become the most successful British-based cycling team ever," Wiggins concluded.

Team Sky has also picked World Road Race Champion Mark Cavendish to be part of its Tour de France line-up. Cavendish rides his first Tour de France for Team Sky after moving from the now-dissolved Team HTC.

Cavendish has the honor of being the first Briton in 46 years to wear the fabled rainbow jersey in road cycling's biggest bike race. The Manxman, however, will have to balance his interest in defending the points classification title he secured in last year's Tour with his desire to win the Olympic road race in London later this summer. Cavendish' remarkable tally of twenty Tour de France stage victories has put him joint-sixth on the list of all-time Tour de France stage winners.

Because of Team Sky's dedication to helping Wiggins win the Tour de France 2012 the team has included only one lead-out man for Cavendish in its Tour roster. This is a new experience for the sometimes sensitive Cavendish who is used to seeing team management groups build whole Tour de France teams around him.

Edvald Boasson Hagen will be Cavendish's sole lead out man in the sprints, but he has also been told to offer his support to Wiggins when the Tour reaches the mountains. If the opportunity arises, Boasson Hagen is also highly capable of going for stage victories himself, as demonstrated in the 2011 edition when he sprinted to victory in Lisieux and then produced a triumphant and memorable solo attack as the race dropped into Pinerolo.

"If I get the opportunity to go for stage victories myself, I'll definitely try to take them, but I have a role in the team to fulfill and anything other than that will be a bonus. I'm really looking forward to riding the Tour. It's the biggest race of the year and we have entered a very strong team, so it's going to be great to be part of," Norwegian Boasson Hagen explained.

Commenting on the Sky team management's decision to direct most of the team's focus towards Wiggins in this year's Tour, Cavendish told "I know the push for the GC podium will make it more difficult for me to repeat the success I've enjoyed the last few years. But I'll compete and, as always, I'll dedicate myself to making it a successful Tour for Team Sky and, let's hope, for Britain."

2011 Vuelta a Espana runner up Chris Froome, Volta ao Algarve winner Richie Porte, and three-time World Time Trial champion Michael Rogers will be Wiggins' biggest allies on the most challenging Tour de France stages - as they have been in the team's Spring campaign.

Christian Knees and Kanstantsin Siutsou will function as wingmen for Wiggins during the flatter transportation sections of the race. Bernhard Eisel brings his invaluable experience to the squad and the team management expects his all-round capabilities to prove a huge asset to the team.

Team Sky Principal Director Dave Brailsford found it very hard to decide which nine riders to include in the team's Tour de France line-up. Brailsford is working hard to convince fans and members of the press of the team's ability to deliver powerful support for both Wiggins and Cavendish in the race.

"Deciding our final nine was a very tough challenge because we are blessed with a great depth of talent in our squad. We believe we have picked a strong and balanced team though, and one which can cater for any eventuality. Our priority this year is the General Classification with Bradley (Wiggins) but that doesn't mean we'll neglect the sprint stages, or Mark's bid for green jersey."

"This squad is truly world class with a proven pedigree of success. They have trained, raced and lived together since the start of the season and that has moulded them into a well-oiled, focused and close-knit team. They are all full of confidence after their recent run of results and it's going to be exciting to see how the race transpires," Brailsford explained.

While the team's chosen strategy may be helpful for Wiggins by transferring pressure and focus from Wiggins to Cavendish in beginning of the race, the team may also expend valuable energy on helping Cavendish in the sprints and end up disintegrated if Cavendish proves unsuccessful and overly challenged in the sprints and, therefore, tries to secure additional lead-out riders for the sprints.

An interesting 2012 Tour de France awaits!

Team Sky Roster for 2012 Tour de France:
Bradley Wiggins, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Mark Cavendish, Michael Rogers, Chris Froome, Bernhard Eisel, Richie Porte, Kanstantsin Siutsou, and Christian Knees.

Tour de France GC favorite Bradley Wiggins uses the premium training diary to plan, register and analyze his training and racing. Sign up for the free version here to gain access to some of the same training tools - or upgrade to premium to gain the same advantage as Wiggins, Cavendish and the rest of Team Sky's Tour de France roster.

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