Menchov surprises many and joins Sastre at Geox for 2011
After weeks of speculation that Rabobank's Denis Menchov was poised to join the Russian-sponsored Katusha team, the two-time winner of the Vuelta a España has signed with Spain's team Geox.
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After weeks of speculation that Rabobank’s Denis Menchov was poised to join the Russian-sponsored Katusha team, the two-time winner of the Vuelta a España has signed with Spain’s team Geox.
Menchov, third at this year’s Tour de France, will join 2008 Tour winner Carlos Sastre on the team that once operated under the Saunier Duval banner and is currently sponsored by Footon-Servetto.
Signing Menchov, winner of the 2009 Giro d’Italia, represents a big score for the team that only two years ago was poised at the brink of collapse, following positive doping tests from two of its star riders Ricardo Ricco and Leonardo Piepoli.
“We’re very happy to see Denis Menchov quickly understood the level of commitment we have to making next year a big success for this team,” explained General Manager Mauro Gianetti. “With Carlos Sastre already on board, they will represent a very competitive combination in grand tours.
“Denis’ strength in the time trial is a perfect complement to Carlos’ pure climbing style. At this point, the Geox team is coming together as we had hoped and we still have some interesting riders to add to the roster before the year is up.”
(Related: A list of recent confirmed ProTour transfers, extensions and retirements)