German team still aiming for Grand Tours
Stung by the disappointment of being left off the list of teams invited to the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France, the German team NetApp-Endura is still hoping to compete in a Grand Tour in 2013, and are actively pursuing a bid for the Vuelta a España.
"Of course we are disappointed not to be riding in the world's most famous cycling race this year," said team manager Ralph Denk. "It was a great honor for us to be among the small group of candidates for both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.
"We are sticking to our goal for the season, to compete in a Grand Tour once again this year. We are already engaged in very promising discussions with the Vuelta a España and we will now further intensify our talks.
"The Vuelta is extremely demanding this year and with many mountain finishes it suits us fine. We are all the more motivated to adjust our season's planning and to shift our moment of peak form into August," Denk concluded.
The Tour de France has not included any German teams since 2010, after Team Milram folded and no teams from that country made it to the WorldTour. Since 2010, the ASO has awarded all available wildcard spots to French teams. The late addition of Katusha to the WorldTour this year, making 19 teams automatically invited to the Tour de France, meant there were only three spaces available. Those were awarded to Team Europcar, Sojasun and Cofidis.