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The Vacansoleil team on stage for pre-race introduction.
Dutch ProTeam squad stronger than ever after nine new signings
Ezequiel Mosquera has been officially listed by Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team as part of its 25-rider squad for 2011 despite the doping case looming over the Spanish rider.
Mosquera signed with the new ProTeam Dutch squad in September but it was subsequently announced that he had tested positive for masking agent hydroxyethyl starch (HES) during this year's Vuelta a España, where he finished second overall as part of the now defunct Xacobeo-Galicia outfit.
The UCI confirmed earlier this month that the 34-year-old Spaniard remains under investigation however he has not been suspended. He remains eligible to race until the results of his B sample test have been announced.
Pending the outcome of the investigation, Mosquera is one of nine new riders named as part of Vacansoleil's 2011 line-up. Stijn Devolder was one of the team's marquee signings, having joined the team from Quick Step. He joins Belgian compatriot Thomas de Gendt, Dutchmen Danny Keizer and Pim Ligthart (Netherlands), the Ukraine's Ruslan Pidgornyy, Russia's Maxim Belkov and Italy's Mirko Selvaggi as the new faces in the squad.
They will join 16 members of the 2010 squad, including Riccardo Riccò, Bjorn Leukemans, Johnny Hoogerland and Romain Feillu. Feillu's brother, Brice, and 2010 Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne winner Bobbie Traksel were the biggest-name departures from the squad, joining the Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project and Pegasus Sports, respectively.
Despite the wholesale changes in structure for the team, sports director Michel Cornelisse said he was pleased with how the riders were getting to know each other at the squad's first official meeting this week.
"The riders are looking forward to the new season and I have great faith in this group," he said in a team statement. "The majority have been racing together for two years and the riders know what all they have to do for each other. The new riders already feel part of the team so I expect we'll be a strong group from the very first races."
The team will make its ProTeam debut at the first event of the newly-named 2011 UCI World Tour calendar, the Tour Down Under on January 18.
Vacansoleil - DCM Pro Cycling Team roster for 2011:
Johnny Hoogerland (Netherlands)
Jens Mouris (Netherlands)
Lieuwe Westra (Netherlands)
Wout Poels (Netherlands)
Rob Ruygh (Netherlands)
Joost van Leijen (Netherlands)
Danny Keizer (Netherlands)
Pim Ligthart (Netherlands)
Géry Gardeyn (Belgium)
Bjorn Leukemans (Belgium)
Frederick Veuchelen (Belgium)
Stijn Devolder (Belgium)
Thomas de Gendt (Belgium)
Marco Marcato (Italy)
Matteo Carrara (Italy)
Alberto Ongarato (Italy)
Mirko Selvaggi (Italy)
Riccardo Riccò (Italy)
Borut Bozic (Slovenia)
Sergey Lagutin (Uzbekistan)
Romain Feillu (France)
Michal Golas (Poland)
Ezequiel Mosquera (Spain)
Ruslan Pidgornyy (Ukraine)
Maxim Belkov (Russia)