A little while back I asked, “Anyone have the 3 mil € for Cancellara?” And the answer is, apparently, we will never know.
Rumors have been flying ever since Cancellara’s early abandonment of this years Veulta that Riis and Cancellara were parting ways. Bjarne has now confirmed that an agreement has been reached that will release Cancellara from his contract with Saxo one year ahead of schedule. There seems to be a high liklihood that Cancellara will now join the Schlecks – and other current Saxo Bank teammates – on the new Luxembourg team being formed. Another possibility that has been rumored in the works for Swiss time trial champion would be to join BMC – a Switzerland based team.
As will all transfer season rumors, it isn’t decided until the ink dries on the contract. And you should probably give it a few days after that too.
Bjarne Riis – manager of Team Saxo Bank – may be changing riders faster than some can keep track, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t know how to run a team as a business. His remaining star rider (not to be confused with is new star rider) Fabian Cancellara still has one year left on his contract. Due to this contract, and a couple of comments made by Fabian during the initial round of speculations about the Schleck’s new Luxembourg team, it was mostly assumed that Fabian would remain with Riis for the remainder of his contract.
The Saxodus continues as more and more people confirm that they are leaving Saxo Bank for other teams. Here’s a quick rundown of current migrations:
- Frank Schleck – “I’ll go where Andy goes!”
- Andy Schleck – “I’ll go where Frank goes!”
- Frank-n-Andy Schleck – New Luxembourg team. Sponsor still TBD.
- Jens Voigt – Confirmed to be leaving Saxo Bank. Most indications are that he is going to join the Frank-n-Andy endeavor, but that has not been confirmed at the time of this writing.
- Jakob Fuglsang – Moving with Frank-n-Andy
- Steuart O’Grady- Moving with Frank-n-Andy
- Matti Breschel – Transfering his accounts from one bank to another, Matti is moving from Saxo Bank to Rabobank.
That makes six out of the nine Saxo Bank riders in the 2010 Tour de France that are heading for other teams – 5 of them apparently to the same new team. Fabian Cencellara still has one year remaining on his contract with Saxo Bank, and of course Alberto Contador has signed on to the newly names Saxo Bank-Sungard team for two years.
The Danish website TV2 Sporten is reporting (English translation here) that there are indications Jens Voigt will possibly be leaving the current Team Saxo Bank to join Frank and Andy Schleck on their new Luxembourg team. Reports are that Kim Anderson – former directeur sportif of Team Saxo Bank now working to help set up the new Luxembourg team – has contacted Jen Voigt about a possible spot.
VeloNews as confirmed the rumors that Alberto Contador will leave Astana to ride with Team Saxo Bank next season. These moves are potentially setting up a repeat of this years Tour de France next year, with Andy Schleck again facing off against Alberto Contador. In fact, Andy Schleck as already stated as much on the website andyschleck.com:
Next year I can turn the tables and win the Tour. I did a bad prologue this year and I have to admit that, but Fränk crashing out was a big loss. If there were two of us in the mountains it could have been so different. But now I know that I can beat Alberto and that gives me huge confidence and motivation for next year.