By Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany
"Everything new – everything different" is the motto for Team Milram in the 2009 season it announced at a team presentation in Dortmund, Germany, today. The only remaining German ProTour team changed drastically from last year. The team features 25 riders, 17 of whom are German, and it has totally moved away from its "one super star" concept of the past and now features a balanced list of riders.
The two new captains are Linus Gerdemann and Gerald Ciolek, both of whom came over from Team Columbia. Both praised their new teammates. "The first training camp showed that we can all pull together," Gerdemann said. Ciolek noted that he would have to get used to his new sprint helpers, and that "a sprinter needs the support of the whole team."
Germany has lost two of its ProTour teams in the recent years – Gerolsteiner and T-Mobile. "The whole focus is on us. That is a lot of pressure, but we are glad to accept the responsibility," said General Manager Gerry van Gerwen.
The Dutchman has high goals for the coming year; he called for 25 victories. He specifically mentioned the Tour de France, with Gerdemann looking for at least a day in the yellow leader's jersey and Ciolek at least a day in the green sprinter's jersey. In addition, he wants at least one stage win.
A complete report on the Milram team presentation will appear soon.