US elite time trial champion itching to race a Grand Tour
The Felt-Holowesko Partners-Garmin squad is in its second year as the official farm team for the Garmin-Slipstream ProTour squad, and have already enjoyed ample success in the US professional scene. Having swept the titles at the US elite national championships, some of the riders will graduate to the sport's top tier next year.
Elite time trial champion Peter Stetina is one of the riders who will join Garmin-Slipstream next season. He signed a two-year contract and is already looking forward to moving overseas to Europe and perhaps taking on his first Grand Tour.
"I'll be in Girona most likely, or somewhere in Spain. I like Spain a lot, I can speak Spanish. I haven't really talked to anyone about a schedule. I think they foresee me as being a stage racer and a climber so I think they'll be putting me in climbing stage races like Tour of the Basque Country and that kind of stuff. Maybe Paris-Nice would be fun in the early season.
"My goal next year is to complete a Grand Tour so I think it's either going to be the Giro or the Vuelta. If I'm riding well enough then I think I'll get chosen for that. My goal is to finish one of those and get my feet wet."
Stetina was one of the first riders to join the developmental team started by Jonathan Vaughters.
"I've been riding for Jonathan since I was 15 years old," said Stetina. "I was one of the original guys when it was just a local Colorado team. He's always kind of believed in me and kept me on the team from year to year even when I've had a couple of bad seasons. He's given me a slot and the chance to show that I'm strong enough. He brought me up. "
Stetina already got a taste of riding with his future teammates when both teams rode together at the pre-season training camp in Boulder, Colorado.
"I have a bit more contact with them because I trained with them in the past," said Stetina. "I was on the pro team in 2007 before they had the development squad.
"Guys like Will Frischkorn and Christian [Vande Velde] point things out to me. I'm still learning even though I'm one of the leaders on the development team. You think you've mastered it and you can do well at racing but there's still so much to learn. I'm still always learning and those guys are always eager to share."
Read more about the Felt-Holowesko Partners-Garmin U23 team.
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