By Monika Prell
Contrary to some rumours that announced the official team roster of Caisse d'Epargne for the Tour de France, its Directeur Sportif Eusebio Unzue denied that the nine riders are already fixed.
Het Laatste Nieuws published the names of Alejandro Valverde, Oscar Pereiro, José Vicente Garcia, Xabier Zandio, Luis León Sánchez, Francisco Pérez, Vladimir Karpets and the Frenchmen Florent Brard and Nicolas Portal as riding the Tour de France for sure. According to Diario Vasco, Unzue said, "I don't know how they could write that this is the final team lineup." He still "wants to check out a lot of riders in the Dauphiné."
He affirmed that besides "the eight riders who are riding the Dauphiné Libéré, [Alejandro] Valverde, [Florent] Brard, [José Vicente] García Acosta, Fran Pérez, Oscar Pereiro, [Nicolas] Portal, Luis León Sánchez and [Xabier] Zandio" that the other four are possible candidates are José Iván Gutiérrez, Joaquím Rodríguez, Vladimir Karpets and David Arroyo.
"From those names I will eliminate two. After this race [the Dauphiné], we will have six definite riders. There are still riders like Luis León Sánchez, García Acosta or Fran Pérez who should justify their nomination. Pereiro is not at his best, either."
Unzue says that the only objective the team has is "to arrive at the Tour in the best possible condition."