Hoogerland and Van Hummel presented in new kit
Johnny Hoogerland and Kenny van Hummel stood proud of their places next to their new boss Gianni Savio as the Androni Giocattoli team had their photos taken in their new kit.
The kit hasn't changed much since last year, but the team has. Hoogerland is Savio's biggest signing of the off-season. He joined the squad after his Vacansoleil-DCM team folded at the end of the year. The Dutch champion's irrepressible style will no doubt be well suited to the Italian team. Hoogerland is expected to form part of Androni's Giro d'Italia squad.
With a team made up of predominantly Italian and Venzuelan riders, the signing of Hoogerland and Van Hummel will be important to the team. Their presence will increase the likelihood of securing invitations to the Dutch and Belgian WorldTour races. Hoogerland's propensity to go on the attack should also provide the team's sponsors with good TV time.
Returning to the team for 2014 is Franco Pellizotti. The 36-year-old reached a deal to race with Astana for this season, but wasn't allowed to race until May 2 due to MPCC rules regarding riders banned for more that six months. Astana then did a surprising U-turn last month and announced that Pellizotti was no longer part of the team. Fortunately for the former Italian national champion, Savio welcomed him back into the fold with open arms.
Other new signings include Marco Bandiera, who joined from IAM Cycling, and Manuele Belletti, who moved over from AG2R.
Click here for the gallery.