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Rujano close to Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears

After a turbulent 2006 season, Venezuelan José Rujano could be close to joining Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears. According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, the 24 year-old rider who spent half of his season with Selle Italia-Serramenti Diquigiovanni and half with Quick-Step may join the team of José Miguel Echavarri.

Rujano, third in the 2005 Giro d'Italia and best climber, left the Belgian Quick-Step squadra late last month, saying at the time, "Unfortunately, I haven't succeeded in reaching the objectives that I was me preset with the team because of some personal problems that have conditioned my season." If the deal goes through, Rujano would ride alongside of riders like Oscar Pereiro and 2006 ProTour champion Alejandro Valverde, and would be expected to aim for the 2007 Giro's maglia rosa.

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