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Tour de France sparks transfers talk

By:
Susan Westemeyer
Published:
July 17, 2013, 11:08 BST,
Updated:
July 17, 2013, 11:38 BST
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Race:
Tour de France, Stage 17
Laurens ten Dam sporting Belkin's new kit

Laurens ten Dam sporting Belkin's new kit

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Dehaes, Devolder, Albasini and ten Dam in the news

The official transfer season doesn't start until August 1 under UCI rules, but that doesn't stop the flow of early negotiations, rumours and news of riders extending their contracts with their present squads.

Lotto Belisol has been busily re-signing as many of its riders as it can during the Tour de France and the latest is Kenny Dehaes. He has already brought in four wins this season, including the GP Dubois this week. Andre Greipel, Adam Hansen and Greg Henderson have agreed new contracts for the next two years.

"I'm really happy with the extension of my contract and with the confidence that the team shows in me," Fehaes said on the team's website. "Racing for a team such as Lotto Belisol is very pleasant because it's like being in a family or in a group of close friends, in which everyone supports each other unconditionally.”

Michael Albasini is said to have re-upped with Orica-GreenEdge, according Srf.ch. The 32-year old has been with the Australian team since 2012 and will now stay with them another two years.

That means Albasini will not be joining IAM, where his father Marcello is a directeur sportif. But Swiss rider Mathias Frank may well be heading there. After five years with BMC Racing Team, he is leaving, team owner Andy Rihs has confirmed to the tagesanzeiger.ch.

Stijn Devolder has not yet signed, but has agreed to ride for the new look Team Trek that will rise from the ashes of Radioshack-Leopard. The Belgian joined the team this season after what the Gazet van Antwerpen called “two absolutely disastrous years” with Vacansoleil-DCM.

Laurens ten Dam would very much like to stay with Belkin, where his contract expires after this season. AD.nl reports that his manager and team management are in negotiations. The Dutch rider, who is currently sixth overall in the Tour de France, is also said to have attracted the interest of Argos-Shimano and Saxo-Tinkoff.

If one Quintana is good, then two are even better. Tuttobiciweb.it reports that Movistar has offered a contract to Nairo Quintana's younger brother, Dayer, who turns 22 next month, has impressed in several Spanish Under 23 races this season.

Movistar may well have an open sport on its roster for next year, as yesterday's Tour de France stage winner Rui Costa's contract expires the end of this season. He has announced that he will not start any negotiations until after the Tour de France ends. A number of teams are interested, but Biciciclismo predicts that he will probably re-sign with Movistar, even though some of the other offers may be financially better.

With Vacansoleil-DCM still looking for a sponsor for the future, its riders have started looking for news teams for their futures. Lieuwe Westra is said to be on the verge of signing a two-year contract with Astana, according to NUsport.nl. Saxo-Tinkoff and Lotto Belisol had also expressed their interest in the Belgian.

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