They've already taken two stage wins in their first outing at the Tour California, but there's more than a few scratching their heads at this gang of big-name riders wearing Captain America outfits. Chris Henry answers the question, 'Who is Toyota-United Pro?'
It's hard to be a fan of American cycling and not know Frankie Andreu. Twelve years as a professional on the biggest teams from the United States, Andreu is a seasoned veteran of two Olympic Games (finishing 8th in 1988 and 4th in 1996), nine Tours de France (including US Postal teammate Lance Armstrong's 1999 and 2000 victories), and tireless support for his teams in World Cup classics and major stage races throughout the seasons. Following retirement from the peloton in 2000, Andreu kept himself involved as directeur sportif for US Postal in the United States, as well as landing television broadcast work with the Outdoor Life Network's cycling coverage in the U.S.
In 2006, a few years removed from the team car, Andreu is throwing his hat back in the domestic team ring, taking the job of co-director for the new Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team. A few hours after the team's big unveiling at the ESPN Zone in New York's Times Square, Andreu managed to make time and find the energy for an afternoon chat with Cyclingnews back at his hotel on 7th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. Sitting in the lobby bar, going incognito in blue jeans, a faded Michigan t-shirt and a knit cap, Andreu offered his usual, friendly "what's up?" to start the proceedings before recounting with some enthusiasm his chance encounters with race car driver Jeff Gordon and 'some boxer...'