The organisers of the Santos Tour Down Under have revealed the line-up of the Drapac team that will take part in the 2014 edition of the race, with Jonathan Cantwell set to lead the team in the first WorldTour race of the season.
Also named in the team are Thomas Palmer, Travis Meyer, William Clarke, Bernard Sulzberger, Wesley Sulzberger and Darren Lapthorne. Henk Vogels will be the directeur sportif as the team makes its debut as a Professional Continental team in 2014.
"The wildcard invitation extended to Drapac Professional Cycling is an excellent opportunity for our home grown cyclists to line up against the world's best and cycling fans can expect some fantastic racing action," Australian Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell said in an announcement from the Santos Tour Down Under organisers.
"Drapac Professional Cycling's roster announced today will see another seven Australians added to the world-class line up of professional cyclists competing here in January."
"The Santos Tour Down Under attracts the best cyclists in the world and our Aussie cyclists always receive an extra big cheer from the crowds."
Drapac's presence at the 2014 Tour Down Under will see three Australian teams in action in the race. Also on the start list is the Orica-GreenEdge WorldTour team and the UniSA-Australia development team. The rest of the field consists of the other 17 WorldTour teams.
The Tour Down Under attracts some of the biggest names in the peloton, with sprinters Andrei Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) and Marcel Kittel (Argos-Shimano) set to clash in Adelaide. Cadel Evans (BMC) will also return to the Tour Down Under in 2014.
Henk Vogels said the Drapac team would not be content in just making its UCI WorldTour debut in Adelaide.
"Everyone knows Jonathan Cantwell is quick, but Drapac is taking a very balanced squad to the race," he said.
"We'll aim to be the most attacking team at the Santos Tour Down Under and will be looking to take our opportunities where ever we can. Our guys won't just be waiting to come off Andre Greipel's wheel in a sprint finish. Expect Drapac to be mega-active where it counts."
The Santos Tour Down Under is held in Adelaide and South Australia between 19-26 January.