Italian media are reporting that Filippo Pozzato is considering re-joining the Pro-Continental Southeast team next season with his contract ending with Lampre-Merida. The former Milan-San Remo winner has been linked to Tinkoff-Saxo and has options open for his next contract but is said to be considering the team of Angelo Citracca once again. Since joining the Lampre team in 2013, Pozzato has had a rather strained relationship with general manager Brent Copeland with little results and no victories to appease either party.
Citracca is hoping to unite the 34-year-old with Oscar Gatto at Southeast after the duo enjoyed the 2012 season together when Pozzato joined the Fini Varnese team from Katusha. The team manager though could end up without both riders with Gatto set to sign a deal with Tinkoff-Saxo this week and Pozzato yet to declare his hand.
Preben Van Hecke extends Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise contract
Belgian national champion Preben Van Hecke will remain with Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise having decided to stay with the team he joined in 2008. The 33-year-old explained to Sporza that while he could be "financially better off" elsewhere, he preferred to stay with the team full of his friends.
"Several teams showed interest in me," Van Hecke told Sporza. "With two French teams, I have even been at the negotiation table several times."
"But in the end I chose to stay with my friends. Financially I was going to be better off abroad, but I did not want to languish there."
Van Hecke won the biggest race of his career when he got the better of Jurgen Roelandts and Greg Van Avermaet at the Belgian nationals in June. It was just the third win of his career following 2013 success at Grand Prix de la Somme and a stage of the 2004 Ster Elektrotoer.
Prior joining Topsport, Van Hecke rode with the Lotto team between 2005 and 2007 making his only two grand tour appearances to date at the Vuelta a Espana and Giro d'Italia.
Michael Carbel extends with Cult Energy-Stölting Group
The Danish Cult Energy-Stölting Group team have announced an another contract extension for the 2016 season with 20-year-old Michael Carbel remaining with the team. Sport director André Steensen has been pleased with the performances of the neo-pro and believes he will be a rider to watch in the coming years.
"Carbel is another great talent we get to work with next year. He is still only 20 years old and you have to consider his age when deciding what to expect from him. But looking at Michael's first professional season, he has been putting top-five results in his pocket and he has been at his best in the races where we expected most from him," Steensen said. "This gives us hope that Michael will be even stronger in 2016, a year older and more experienced. Michael has the talent to go far in his career and with more experience, he will be able to get more results for us next year, I'm sure."
Carbel's best result of the season was third place at Energiewacht Dwars door Drenthe and long with several top results, has gained confidence of the 2015 season moving forward in his professional career.
"This season has been a rollercoaster ride considering my own results but looking in the rearview mirror, I have gained a lot of experience and I had some good moments here and there," Carbel said. "I'm glad I decided to take the next step up after only one year as a Continental rider and I’m happy to be able to continue my development at least one more year with CULT Energy-Stölting Group. In 2016, I hope to be achieving more top results and hopefully net a few wins along the way."