French time trial champion Nicolas Vogondy has signed a two-year contract with Cofidis. The contract was signed before the start of the Vuelta a Españ’s stage 18, Vogondy’s final stage at the event before flying to Australia for the world championships.
Vogondy currently competes with Bbox Bouygues Telecom, but team manager Jean-René Bernaudeau is yet to announce a new sponsor for next year.
“This morning I have signed a two-year contract with Cofidis,” Vogondy told Cyclingnews. “Jean-René told us that he would announce his new sponsor on August 15, then on September 1 and now it’s supposedly for September 20.
“I’ve called him to tell him that I couldn’t wait any longer,” he added. “To have a contract for two years brings me serenity.”
Like many Bbox Bouygues Telecom riders the 33-year-old had been patient with the squad’s sponsor search after the team offered him a lifeline following the closure of Agritubel. Vogondy is the sixth rider to leave Bernaudeau joining Yuriy Trofimov (Katusha), Steve Chainel (FDJ), William Bonnet (FDJ), Johann Tschopp (BMC) and Pierrick Fédrigo (FDJ), who signed yesterday.
Thomas Voeckler, Cyril Gautier, Sébastien Turgot and Pierre Rolland have also been chased by other teams, but remain hopeful that Bernaudeau will come up with good news on Monday.
Vogondy’s attention will now turn to the Worlds, where he’ll contest the time trial for France. “I’m stopping the Vuelta tonight,” he said. “I’ve worked well for the time trial at the world championship. I’m ready.”
Vogondy finished 16th in the Vuelta’s 46-km time trial in Peñafiel on Wednesday, just behind race leader Vincenzo Nibali. He will not take part in the road race in Victoria.