Hilaire Van Der Schueren will take over the Accent Jobs-Wanty squad with road construction company Wanty as title sponsor. Several riders from the Vacansoleil-DCM team, where Van Der Schueren was sports director this year, will find a place with the Belgian ProContinental team next season.
"But I can't take everyone," the Belgian director sportif told NOS.
"It's going to be a ProContinental team with 20 to 25 riders," Van Der Schueren said. "We found a second title sponsor which will be revealed soon. I had to send all the paperwork to UCI before the first of October. They received it this morning."
One of the riders who will ride for the team in 2014 is Björn Leukemans. The Belgian veteran is a Classics specialist and has several top 10 places in the Spring Classics on his palmares. The 36-year-old rode for Vacansoleil-DCM team from the start in 2009. In that time, he won the Druivenkoers four times and was victorious in the overall of the 2011 Tour de Limousin.
"Leukemans will sign today or tomorrow. I don't know where Johnny Hoogerland stands at the moment. I know he was negociating with Astana, Lampre-Merida and Alonso's team. I like Johnny and will talk with him tomorrow," said Van Der Schueren.
Another rider who was talking with Alonso's 2014 Euskaltel project was sprinter Kenny van Hummel. "He had a deal with Alonso, but obviously that didn't go ahead. I haven't spoken to him yet," said Van Der Schueren.
Marco Marcato was on the list of Wanty for 2014, but the Italian rider got a better deal with Cannondale. "Marco will sign with Cannondale. Juan Antonio Flecha called me last week. He'd like to continue for one more year. And he'd like to do that on my team," the sports director said.
Frederik Veuchelen and Mirko Selvaggi signed for Wanty. Van Der Schueren is still in talks with Romain Feillu and Tomasz Marczynski. From Accent Jobs-Wanty, the current name of the team, Luxembourg sprinter Jempy Drucker, among others, is coming over.
"I can't take all the riders I now have at Vacansoleil-DCM," Van Der Schueren, "but talented guys like Maurits Lammertink, Wesley Kreder, Bertjan Lindeman and Wouter Moll are close to my heart though I'd like to stress that nothing is signed."
With Leukemans, Veuchelen and Selvaggi to Wanty, 14 of the 29 Vacansoleil-DCM riders have now signed a contract for next season. Kris Boeckmans and Pim Ligthart is moving to Lotto-Belisol. Barry Markus is going to Team Belkin, and Rafa Valls inked a deal with Lampre-Merida.
Dutch time trial champion Lieuwe Westra is going to Astana and climber Wout Poels has a deal with Omega Pharma- Quick Step. Sergey Lagutin is joining Rusvelo. Marco Marcato received an offer from Cannondale. José Rujano retired earlier this year, and Nikita Novikov was suspended for a positive doping test.
Boy and Danny van Poppel and Wesley Kreder have signed agreements, but their teams haven't been revealed yet.
However, one of the biggest names of Vacansoleil-DCM is still left without a team. "Thomas de Gendt will be too expensive," Van Der Schueren said.
In the Belgian media, De Gendt is now linked to Omega Pharma - Quick Step, where an extra slot came available with Janier Acevedo signing for Garmin-Sharp, and Garmin-Sharp has as an option for 2014.
"But when nothing has been signed before the end of this month, I know where I stand," De Gendt said today.