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Project TJ Sport riders gather in Italy for first camp - Gallery

Riders for Project TJ Sport, the Chinese-registered WorldTour team that has yet to be officially named, are gathering this week in Darfo Boario Terme, Italy, to get to know one another and undergo some initial medical testing.

The meeting is the first of its kind for the team, which formed when Chinese company TJ Sport Consultation was announced as the new license holder of Italian team Lampre-Merida. The company replaces CGS Cycling as the holding agent to create China's first WorldTour team from the 2017 season onwards. A Chinese naming rights sponsor is to be announced.

The team has brought on sprinter Ben Swfit from Team Sky, along with talented Colombian climber Darwin Atapuma from BMC Racing.

"The team will face the 2017 season with even more enthusiasm and with some innovation," said team manager Giuseppe Saronni. "It is a great pleasure that we'll be able to start once again in Darfo Boario Terme. Thanks to Ezio Maffi and its partners, Darfo Boario Terme is a sort of second home for our team and it has become in these years a benchmark of the cycling movement. We really thank who has made this possible. We hope the team meeting will be as useful as it has always been, and that it could be a first step towards a season full of satisfactions." 

The first camp is not a riding camp, according to the team, so aside from the medical tests and meetings with various staff and technical partners, riders and directors also discussed winter training accommodations and potential race programs for next year. The only riders from the 2017 roster not in attendance are Atapuma, Swift, Meintjes, Matteo Bono and the injured Valerio Conti.

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