Bennett one of seven other riders to extend with Pro-Continental team
After an impressive Tour de France, Czech national time trial champion Jan Barta has secured a three-year contract extension with NetApp–Endura. The German Pro-Continental team, who will be known as Team Bora from next year, also announced that it has secured contract extensions for seven other riders as it builds it squad for the coming season.
"We are planning for a team comprising 20 riders, up to seven of whom will be new additions," explained team manager Ralph Denk. "We are able to announce some initial contract extensions today. Further extensions will follow and will be supplemented by targeted new additions. The new riders will preferably come from the German-speaking region and will provide us with reinforcement both for the classic races and for the tours."
Barta joined the team when its started in 2010 and has impressed Denk with his skill when racing against the clock.
"One can justifiably claim that Jan numbers among the ten best time trial riders in the world," Denk said. "He proved this on the Tour and at the last world championships. We will be working on tapping his potential still further over the next three years. Now it is a matter of fine tuning and that takes time."
The German team also announced that the German riders, Paul Voss and Andreas Schillinger, have been handed extensions by the team after riding the Tour in July.
"Despite having broken his nose and finger Paul still rode a very strong Tour and displayed his quality," Denk added. "That's what is essential for the monuments and grand tours. Andreas has been with our team from the outset – he is one of our most experienced riders. He is a classic capitaine de la route and, as such, is of key importance to the team in many races."
Irish sprinter Sam Bennett has also extended his contract with the team for one season as has Australian Zak Dempster and Daniel Schorn.
Dempster is a key lead-out rider for Bennett who has taken three wins so far this season. Denk was keen to secure the services of the duo and is confident their combination will continue to bring in the wins.
"Sam is riding his first season and has done extremely well," Denk said. "Zak has taken on a sort of mentor role for Sam and as such paved the way for him at many races. Daniel numbers among the strong classic sprinters and he is riding a very good second-half of the season with top positions. I am sure that we will benefit from our fast guys over the coming weeks and aim to continue to do so next year too of course."
The other riders that will remain with the team are Cesare Benedetti, Bartosz Huzarski and Jose Mendes.
"All three riders have proven their value to the team," Denk explained. "Cesare has been riding with us for five years, Bartosz for four and Jose for two. The three guys have worked successfully for our captains on all three Grand Tours.
"As Bartosz is showing currently with his Top10 position in Colorado, they also take their chances whenever the opportunity arises. They are the type of rider we definitely wish to have in our team in the future too. "
The team's GC rider Leopold König has announced that he is considering options from WorldTour teams and is likely to ride for a rival team in 2015.
Denk added that further additions to the team for 2015 will be announced over the coming weeks.
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