Japanese national champion "honoured" to join fledgling team
GreenEdge has confirmed the signing of Japanese road and time trial champion Fumiyuki Beppu.
The news was initially launched on September 1 however, it was countered at the time by the 28-year-old on Twitter saying: "I do NOT have any official announcement and comment about a team for 2012 yet. Pls wait till it is all clear."
One month on, Beppu says that with a stage win at the Tour de France high on his list of priorities, GreenEdge is the right place for him to ply his trade following the past two seasons with RadioShack.
"I am looking forward to riding with the superb riders and staff that have been recruited to the team, who are all highly motivated and have a clear vision," he said.
"This very impressive team structure will put me in the best position to just concentrate on races, and to build my career.
"I'm honoured to be part of this team, which has been 20 years in the making by the best in Australian cycling. I can't wait for next season. I am hoping for a wonderful season with GreenEdge."
Beppu became the second Japanese rider to complete the Tour de France, finishing behind compatriot Yukiya Arashiro in 2009 and this season, the man from Chigasaki became the fourth to have completed the Giro d'Italia, after Masatoshi Ishikawa (50th in 1990 with Hitachi), Hidenori Nodera (139th in 2002 with Colpack) and Arashiro (93rd) last year (with Bbox Bouygues Telecom).
Beppu is the 26th signing for GreenEdge which will learn next month if it will be the first Australian team to secure a UCI ProTour licence.