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Jens Voigt's final pro bike – complete with 'shut up legs' mantra
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The Saxo Bank Sungard team was first off.
Riis says 2012 budget won't suffer from loss of SunGard
Saxo Bank is looking at its sponsorship of Bjarne Riis' team on a year-to-year basis, a philosophy that Riis acknowledged he must accept, even if it makes long-term planning difficult. The Danish bank will be the sole name sponsor of the team in 2012, after SunGard cancelled the final year on its sponsorship contract earlier this week.
The bank also agreed to increase its payment for 2012 to cover the loss of SunGard's contributions. “We will certainly not have less money available,” said Riis.
The Ritzau news agency reported that when Riis and Saxo Bank director Lars Seier Christensen renegotiated their contract in light of the SunGard move, there was no talk of extending the contract beyond 2012.
“We have a general approach where we only bind us to one year for such a major expense like this, Christensen said. “It's a business philosophy that we have.”
Going year-by-year prevents Riis from planning too far in advance, but he has learned to live with it. “I might wish for a longer contract but must also respect the Saxo Bank's way of doing things,” he said.
“It doesn't prevent us from thinking long term. I feel at least reasonably confident in relation to the future.”