Rik Verbrugghe says that his new job as a directeur sportif for Team Quick Step is "a dream come true." The 34 year-old, who retired from racing this year, is rejoining the team he rode for in 2005.
"I am a young sports director. I have actual cycling experience on my side and I think I can make a good impression with the riders on the team." said Verbrugghe, who signed a one-year contract. "My main objectives in this new adventure will be to learn and at the same time pass on all the knowledge I've acquired during my many years as an athlete."
Team manager Patrick Lefevere looked forward to his new DS. "He left an excellent impression when he rode for our team. We're sure he'll know how to live up to his potential as a sports director as well."
Verbrugghe turned professional in 1996 with Team Lotto, where he stayed until joining Quick Step for the 2005 season. He then rode for Team Cofidis for three years. During his career, he won three stages in the Giro d'Italia and one in the Tour de France. He was Belgian national champion in 2000, and also won the Flèche Wallonne in 2001.
The Belgian replaces as Directeur Sportif Dirk Demol, who will work for Team Astana in the coming year. (SW)