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An Euskaltel rider gets ready at the Tour de France start ramp.
Basque team announces 13 rider selection, U23 World Champion Sicard a reserve
Euskaltel-Euskadi has joined fellow ProTour squad Saxo Bank in announcing a long range short list for their 2010 Tour de France Team.
According to the Spanish site Biciciclismo.com, team captain Samuel Sánchez will be supported by Egoi Martinez, Rubén Pérez, Gorka Verdugo and Amets Txurruka in July next year.
The quartet all rode alongside Sánchez at his previous Tour appearance in 2008, where he finished 7th overall, 6:25 behind the winner Carlos Sastre.
Iñaki Isasi, Juanjo Oroz, Alan Pérez, Aitor Hernandez and Iban Velasco were named as the riders who will compete for the final four spots on the nine-man team. Isasi and Oroz were also part of Euskaltel's 2008 Tour team, while Pérez made his debut at this year's race.
Under-23 World Champion and ProTour debutant Romain Sicard was listed as a reserve for the line-up, along with Koldo Fernandez de Larrea and former Fuji-Servetto rider Benat Intxausti.
The team announced this month they would not be racing the Giro d'Italia, the second year in a row they will have skipped the Italian race.
Olympic Champion Sánchez has named the Tour de France as one of his main objectives for next season. This year he finished second overall in his home Grand Tour, the Vuelta a España.