Katusha names final nine for Tour

Steegmans left home

Team Katusha announced its nine riders who will compete in the Tour de France, July 4 to 26. Filippo Pozzato, overall contender Vladimir Karpets and sprinter Danilo Napolitano will lead the team.

The Russian team placed Belgian Gert Steegmans on 'non-active' status yesterday for not signing a clause to his contract to pay five times his salary if caught doping. The team did not select him in its final roster though he has won stages in both the 2006 and 2007 Tour de France.

The complete roster includes Italians Pozzato and Napolitano, Russians Karpets, Alexandre Botcharov, Serguei Ivanov, Mikhail Ignatiev, Nikolai Trusov, Spaniard Joan Horrach and Belgian Stijn Vandenbergh. Serge Parsani and Dimitri Konychev will be the team's directeur sportifs. (GB)

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