Thomas de Gendt is suing Vacansoleil-DCM for the 2014 contract the Belgian rider signed, Gazet van Antwerpen reports. De Gendt signed a new and improved contract with team manager Daan Luijkx after his stellar performance on the Stelvio and subsequent third place in the 2012 Giro.The two year contract is reportedly worth €1,1 million a year.
The contract for both 2013 and 2014 is between team manager Daan Luijkx and De Gendt, and not with the cycling team because Luijkx only had a sponsor agreement for 2013.
“We are now settling things with Thomas,” Luijkx told Cyclingnews today. “First and foremost I am happy Thomas has found a team which gives us a little bit more room. We are now discussing the contract we still have. If we have news to report, we’ll let you now but for now there is nothing more to say.”
After Vacansoleil-DCM had announced that it hadn’t found a new sponsor and wouldn’t continue in 2014, De Gendt received a resignation letter. De Gendt’s manager Paul De Geyter found the letter remarkable.
“The deal we had is being terminated by one party only,” he told Het Nieuwsblad last month. “I expect that they need to buy us out.”
According to the Gazet van Antwerpen, De Gendt has now seized the bank accounts and assets of the team in order for them to pay for their contractual obligations.
The 27-year old De Gendt had trouble finding a team after the demise of Vacansoleil-DCM. In the end he signed with Omega Pharma-Quick Step for 1/5 of his former salary. Before he signed a new contract with the Dutch team in 2012, the same Omega Pharma-Quick Step had offered him a deal but De Gendt opted for an extended stay at Vacansoleil-DCM.