2008 Tour de France winner, Carlos Sastre, has announced that he will leave Cervelo TestTeam at the end of the season in order to join Team Geox for 2011. The Italian shoe manufacturer has taken over the sponsorship of the Footon-Servetto outfit and Sastre is their first major signing.
“The trust that they‘ve placed in me since the very first conversation has been the most important factor that has pushed me towards this new project, but the background and experience of its leaders has also had an influence as they’ve been in cycling for years and years", said the Spaniard.
“At the moment, I’m enjoying riding more than ever as I’ve rediscovered the fighting cyclist that’s always been inside me. This new challenge is exciting and it will provide me with what I’ve been fighting for all my life”, he added.
“We met each other and signed a contract in just two days," said Team Geox's General Manager Mauro Gianetti.
"It was enough to explain him the guidelines of the project from Geox and we instantly had a good feeling. All of us have got to know his extraordinary results, but the main reasons were his ambition and big professionalism. I'm confident that Sastre will be able to find new motivation in this new squad. We chose him not only because of his big palmarès, but also because of the focus he's setting on the upcoming years."
Sastre signed for Cervelo in 2008, just after his Tour de France triumph at CSC. His win was a surprise to many but his stage winning performance on the Alpe d’Huez and a strong final time trial were two outstanding performances that carried him to yellow.
In 2009 he finished third in the Giro d’Italia, winning two stages along the way. However his Tour was a disaster and he struggled to compete for the yellow jersey, eventually finishing in 17th position.
His 2010 season has been a disappointment to date. He crashed and injured himself during the Giro d’Italia but finished an admirable 8th overall in Verona. However he was once again off the pace in the Tour de France and finished 20th overall. His best result this season came at the Clasica San Sebastian, where he finished third.
Sastre is scheduled to ride the Vuelta which starts August 28.
“This decision will not alter anything regarding my participation in the Vuelta a España. What’s more, it is spurring me on even more to fight it out in a race that I really like and which I feel a lot of respect and fondness for. Now I just hope that the team will give me the chance to race with team mates who, like me, want to fight for this race”, said Sastre.