Chris Horner’s hunt for a new team continues after Europcar boss Jean-René Bernaudeau revealed that he turned down an approach by the American rider and his representatives. Meanwhile talks between Horner and the Trek Factory Team are ongoing.
“I don’t work with riders' agents,” Bernaudeau told Sudouest.fr. “I don’t talk with them but they don’t stop offering me their riders. They even offered me Chris Horner for €750.000 per year!”
The Frenchman also denied interest in signing Michele Scarponi, after the Italian’s agent, Raimondo Scimone, told Cyclingnews that negotiations were open between Europcar and the rider.
“I don’t know this Scimone,” said Bernaudeau. “I only know the email he sent me. If mailing me his list of riders counts as me doing them an offer, where does that lead to?”
While spots in the WorldTour for 2014 have become scarce, the winner of one of the three Grand Tours still remains without a team. Trek Factory Team’s Luca Guercilena told Velochrono today that negotiations with Chris Horner were ongoing. “We are still talking with Chris but we haven’t reached a deal yet. We made him an offer but Horner is also talking to other teams.”
Guercilena also revealed he has 28 riders in his 2014 roster. “The team is more or less complete now but we keep our eyes open. There is not much room left for recruitment.”
There is no more room for Andreas Klöden, Ben Hermans (wanted by Wanty and BMC), Tiago Machado and George Bennett. The New Zealand rider is in talks with Cannondale, Guercilena added.
Fabian Cancellara and the Schleck brothers remain important riders on the team. “The Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix are important races but we also want to see how far Fabian can go in Amstel Gold Race.”
In 2014 the Schleck brothers will be reunited. “We have seen that splitting them up is not a good idea. If Frank and Andy are together their potential is higher. With Frank, Andy keeps his cool which is the key to his performance. Next season will be crucial to Andy. It’s either black or white now,” Guercilena told Velochrono.
“Andy is doing the Ardennes Classics but the Giro might be a good option too, with the Tour afterwards. The same goes for Frank but the programs are not defined yet. We do know that they will ride the same program. Separating them proved not to be a good idea.”