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Chris Horner (RadioShack)
Confusion after merger but hoping to ride into his 40s
Chris Horner has told Cyclingnews that confirmation that he is one of the confirmed riders for the newly-merged RadioShack-Nissan-Trek is news to him, despite an earlier statement from Johan Bruyneel that he was one of the safe riders.
Speaking at Interbike in Las Vegas, Horner seemed surprised at the news.
“Did I make the merger?” he said. “Of course I know that the merger is coming together but you’re telling me this information and it’s the first I’ve heard of it.
“I haven’t even seen that everything’s gone through - that may have happened while I’ve been sitting here at the show.”
A statement issued by RadioShack on September 6, explained that Horner along with two-time Tour de France runner-up Andreas Klöden, Haimar Zubeldia, and national champions Matthew Busche, Jani Brajkovic, Nelson Oliveira and neo-pros Jesse Sergent and Ben King would all be a part of the new team from 2012. Horner had recently agreed to a two-year contract extension with RadioShack.
RadioShack-Nissan-Trek is due to make further announcements about their roster within the next 24 hours.
Regardless of his situation, Horner was enthusiastic about what the team could achieve in 2012 and beyond.
“Hypothetically speaking at this moment if the merger’s all there, we’re going to have a team that’s going to have a star-studded, super incredible team that’s going to be something like Mapei had back in the day, when you’re looking at Tony Rominger winning the Giro, winning the Tour of Spain and then all their classic guys,” he said.
“First off look at any stage race that we’ve done, the 10 guys at the finish, there’s Frank [Schleck], Andy [Schleck], [Andreas] Klodi, me there’s Jani [Brajkovic] so you’ve got to ask the other five in that group what they’re going to do.”
Horner, who will turn 40 in October, also said that his current contract would not be his last.
“I’m not planning on retiring in two years, no,” he explained. “I’m going to keep going as long as I can.”