Austria's Markus Eibegger riding for Footon-Servetto at the Giro
Austria's Markus Eibegger riding for Footon-Servetto at the Giro

Footon-Servetto-Fuji, perhaps the least known team among those selected for the Tour de France this summer, has surprised the cycling world by going for youth over experience and including eight Tour virgins in its nine man squad.

The move has caused a stir among cycling fans, who object to the numerous experienced, successful riders whose teams didn’t make the cut, and doubtless raised hackles at teams such as Vacansoleil, whose early season performances in Qatar, the Belgian Classics and the Paris-Nice led them to expect a fair shout at Tour de France inclusion.

Only Giampaolo Cheula, who rode the 2007 and 2008 Tours for Barloworld, has raced in la Grande Boucle previously.

The squad’s average age is 25.5 and Fabio Felline, 20, will be the Tour’s youngest rider.

The full line-up is as follows:

Giampaolo Cheuala

Alberto Benitez

Arkaitz Duran

Iban Mayoz

Rafael Valls

Markus Eibegger

Manuel Cardoso

Fabio Felline

Eros Capecchi

Aiming for stage wins, let’s hope the youngsters repay their DS’s faith in them – and he can therefore repay the Tour’s faith in him.

Stay tuned for the full line up of all 22 Tour de France squads.


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