Milram has announced that the inaugural Tour of Oman will be part of their early season schedule in 2010. The German ProTour team today announced that they will start their 2010 season in Australia at the Tour Down Under Classic and Tour Down Under (January 17-24) before appearances at the Mallorca Challenge (February 7-11), the Tour of Qatar (February 7-12) and the Tour of Oman.
Despite reports that the first edition of the Omani race would be postponed until 2011, Milram's Press Officer Max Biermann today confirmed to Cyclingnews that the event, scheduled for February 14-19, will go ahead.
"We received an email today from Amaury Sports Organisation (ASO) which confirmed our participation in the Tours of Qatar and the Tour of Oman," said Biermann. "That confirms we will be racing there."
Both races are organised in cooperation between ASO and Eddy Merckx's events company, Paumer. Although the route of the Tour of Oman is yet to be announced, Milram expect a hillier race than the pan-flat sprint fest of Qatar, and the team are likely to send a dramatically different roster to the middle-east next year.
"We're planning to send our Classics roster to both Qatar and Oman, as preparation for their spring objectives," said Biermann.
While it is too early for Milram confirm the roster likely for the two races, it is an indication that the team's recent Belgian signings, Roy Sentjens and Wim De Vocht, could be given an early-season opportunity to display their new kit.
With restrictions placed on the number of ProTour teams that can make up the field at smaller races, Milram have been encouraged by the spate of early season invitations extended for 2010.
"We're happy to be recognised by international race organizers," said Milram General Manager Gerry van Gerwen. "We are competing with the other ProTour teams in terms of participation in these attractive smaller races.
"The number of participating teams has been reduced in some races due to financial constraints, so it's a nice compliment that they have an interest in our team."
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