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Trek Factory Racing remains a "band of brothers," says Voigt

By:
Barry Ryan
Published:
January 12, 13:55,
Updated:
January 12, 13:56
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Monday, January 13, 2014
Jens Voigt (Trek Factory Racing)

Jens Voigt (Trek Factory Racing)

  • Jens Voigt (Trek Factory Racing)
  • Germany's Jens Voigt (CSC) celebrates as wins the 13th stage of the 2006 Tour de France
  • Jens Voigt (Radioshack) will look for stage win opportunities just as he did at last year's race.

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Cancellara glad riders are less involved in running of team

Now in its fourth iteration since Andy and Fränk Schleck led a delegation of refugees from Saxo Bank to establish Leopard Trek ahead of the 2011 season, Jens Voigt believes that the revamped Trek Factory Racing squad maintains the same spirit of its beginnings.

The original Leopard Trek line-up was widely dubbed a "band of brothers," in part because of the Luxembourgish pair, but also because the key riders appeared to have a greater than normal input into the running of their squad. That impression was bolstered by the hiring of erstwhile press officer Brian Nygaard as team manager, a sea change from the close tutelage of Bjarne Riis at Saxo Bank.

"We had a great start with Team Leopard in 2011 and I think we’re just reinforcing this band of brothers team right now for this year again," Voigt told reporters ahead of Trek Factory Racing’s presentation in Roubaix on Friday. "I like teams that are run like that."

Nygaard was quickly discarded by Leopard Trek when backer Flavio Becca shoehorned his team to RadioShack for the 2012 season, turning the band of brothers into a supposed super group under the stewardship of Johan Bruyneel, a rather dubious svengali.

When USADA’s Reasoned Decision did for Bruyneel’s career in October 2012, Luca Guercilena was elevated to the manager’s role to steady a floundering ship and he remains in situ following Trek’s acquisition of Becca’s WorldTour licence. In spite of all of the changes over the past four seasons, the four riders who met the press on Friday afternoon – Voigt, Cancellara and the Schleck brothers – had all raced together in CSC, Saxo Bank, Leopard Trek and RadioShack jerseys.

"I think I’ve been racing for probably six or seven years with Andy, Fränk and Fabian. Obviously we have a good friendship, and I really believe that each one of us in these years could have got a euro or two euros more on another team, but we never chose to take that option because we like to work with each other," said Voigt.

"Actually I don’t think there’s been a group of riders that stayed together for so long like us, now that you mention it. I think we all four of us see that we are in a lucky position. We are friends who can still work together in a great environment."

There has been a discernible change in the dynamic of the team since 2011, however. If Leopard Trek was assembled to win the Tour de France with Andy Schleck, the balance has shifted decidedly towards Fabian Cancellara’s classics ambitions in the intervening period.

Cancellara shrugs off the notion that Trek Factory Racing is in any way "his" outfit, however, and insisted that the riders are far less involved in the planning of the team than they were during the Leopard Trek era.

"When you look on the past for me, Fränk and Andy and Jens, we are probably more relaxed because we are less involved in many things. That gives us more space to perform because on the end, we want to perform and not to create," said Cancellara, adding that after years of flux, they were glad of the promise of a stable structure under new owners.

"I think it gives a big chance for us to spend our time on the road and perform there instead of hanging in offices, having meetings and talking by phone and being in charge of all the things. We’ll try to be the best in class on the road, and that’s what counts."

GuyIncognito 8 months ago
Does that mean they fight ze germanz?
Tony M 8 months ago
What is that jersey about ?Looks like a roadworkers undershirt.No disrespect to roadworkers but I'm suggesting the jersey looks like its not intended to be seen !
TheBean 8 months ago
Yep. There is a lot of black in the peloton, lately. But these Trek jerseys are so dull that Sky's blue stripe looks like a kaleidoscope in comparison. They look as though they were designed by someone with a complete lack of style and in a tremendous hurry.
bike_boy 8 months ago
A lot of black is better than a lot of white.
Mark Schwitau 8 months ago
I get the impression that professionals like Cancellara and Voigt don't really give a damn what fancy colors are on their "shirt of the season."
essaye 8 months ago
yep, as long as you win/do well, who cares how the kit looks? As long as they can find each other on the road, don't suffer in the heat, and win it's all forgiven/forgotten!
Lucifa 8 months ago
Bunch of poofters worrying about clothes lol
70kmph 8 months ago
Its the frogman style
wirral 8 months ago
I cannot find any point to this article.
wadoflove 8 months ago
The point is Jensie. Everybody loves Jensie...