On Friday, the Astana Cycling Team announced a list of 13 riders from which the nine final riders will be selected to contest the 2009 Tour de France, beginning July 4 in Monaco. "The complete 2009 Tour roster will be chosen based on the strongest team from both sports and team-spirit criteria," said team manager Johan Bruyneel.
The following six riders are certain to be on the final roster, including, of course, seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and three-time Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador. Joining them will be Andreas Klöden, Levi Leipheimer, Yaroslav Popovych and Haimar Zubeldia.
Of the remaining seven riders on the pre-selection list, three will make the final cut. These riders are: Jani Brajkovic, Chris Horner, Benjamín Noval, Dmitriy Muravyev, Sergio Paulinho, Gregory Rast and Tomas Vaitkus.
The final squad roster is expected to be announced soon.