After already having signed two young pros for the new season, Florian Stalder (Swi) and Fernandez Oliveira (Spa), Phonak's managing company ARcycling AG has brought three more riders on board. The latest recruits for the 2006 squad are 21 year-old David Vitoria (Swi), and Discovery Channel riders Jonathan Patrick McCarty (23, USA) and Ryder Hesjedal (25, Can).
"We want to form one unit for the future," said team manager John Lelangue. "That means we're striving to have a mix of already successful riders and young talents hungry for success. We're getting very close to that goal with the team that we've assembled up till today."
In the meantime, there are 24 riders from 11 countries under contract with the Phonak Cycling Team for the new season. Lelangue is still holding talks with other riders because the UCI ProTour requires that a team have at least 25 riders.
The current 2006 team roster: Aurélien Clerc (Swi), Martin Elmiger (Swi), Gregory Rast (Swi), Johann Tschopp (Swi), Alexandre Moos (Swi), Sascha Urweider (Swi), David Vitoria (Swi), Steve Zampieri (Swi), Florian Stalder (Swi), Axel Merckx (Bel), Koos Moerenhout (Hol), Luis Fernandez Oliveira (Spa), José Enrique Gutierrez (Spa), Ignacio Gutierrez (Spa), Miguel Martin Perdiguero (Spa), Santiago Botero (Col), Victor Hugo Peña (Col), Floyd Landis (USA), Jonathan Patrick McCarty (USA), Ryder Hesjedal (Can), Bert Grabsch (Ger), Nicolas Jalabert (Fra), Uros Murn (Slo), Robert Hunter (RSA)