T-Mobile Team is suffering from early season illnesses and injuries, and will thus be sending only five riders to Sunday's Clasica Almeria. Veteran Giuseppe Guerini will be joined by Sergey Yakovlev and the three youngsters Marcus Burghardt, Bernhard Kohl and Bas Giling. Team spokesman Luuc Eisenga said, "Actually we had planned for Tobias Steinhauser and Paco Lara. But Tobias is still not recovered from his bad cold and Pack crashed in the Valencia Tour. His injuries aren't severe, but he's not ready to start in Almeria."
TMO's Jan Ullrich lost a week of training to a bad cold, which apparently he shared with teammates Guerini and Steinhauser, with Steinhauser having to sit out two weeks of training.
Contracts running out
T-Mobile apparently has only seven riders under contract for the 2006 season, dpa reports. Those seven include Jan Ullrich, Andreas Klöden, Steffen Wesemann and Oscar Sevilla. Two big names are missing there: Erik Zabel and Alexandre Vinokourov. "We will negotiate with Erik after the spring classics," said new team co-manager Olaf Ludwig. At the team's presentation last month, T-Mobile announced it would extend its sponsorship through 2008.
Courtesy of Susan Westemeyer