Team Wiesenhof-Felt is looking to make itself into a team for the classics next season, featuring newcomers Steffen Wesemann and Stefan van Dijk, as well as veteran Steffen Radochla. After losing riders such as young German prodigy Gerald Ciolek and Marcel Sieberg to the ProTour, team manager Raphael Schweda said, "It didn't please us or the sponsors to be represented in the media as a team that was losing its best riders. With our new riders we are giving the team a new picture, but we don't want to lose sight of our work with the younger riders."
Wesemann explained his transfer from T-Mobile: "I chose Wiesenhof-Felt primarily for athletic reasons. The young leadership around Jens Heppner, Raphael Schweda and Markus Schleicher, and with Ronny Lauke as directeur sportif, is a guarantee for me that everyone will be extremely motivated and that I will also have a lot of fun. I am very motivated and want to show those people who have written me off that I haven't forgotten how to win. I want to share my experience with the young team and put my mark on the team. The position as captain for Wiesenhof-Felt is an honour for me and an additional motivation."
The team also announced the signing of Stefan van Dijk, who rode this season for Unibet, after a sitting out a suspension for doping in 2005. The 30 year-old won a stage of the Eneco Tour this year, as well as a stage of the Tour of Belgium. In addition, 30 year-old Ronny Lauke will be a directeur sportif next year. He rode professionally from 1997 to 2004 in small German teams, finishing his career with Winfix-Arnolds Sicherheit, one of the forerunner teams of Wiesenhof.
Courtesy of Susan Westemeyer