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Vorarlbert-Corratec: small team with big hopes

Team Vorarlberg-Corractec is going into the season with a small squad and a small budget, but big hopes. The Austrian Professional Continental Team presented its 2009 line-up Friday evening in Rankweil, Austria.

The most prominent newcomers are Wim Van Huffel of Belgium, Sebastian Siedler of Germany and Austria's own Rene Haselbacher.

"The team structure is perfect, we have both Indians and Chiefs," said team manager Thomas Kofler. "Everyone is aware how serious the situation is and wants to get the best for himself and for the team."

The team lost its long-time sponsor Volksbank at the end of last season. Not only does the team have a smaller budget, it has higher expenditures. It participates in the UCI biological passport programme and is a member of the Movement for Credible Cycling – the only Austrian team to participate in those two programmes.

"This will be a super season," Kofler proclaimed. The team has UCI wildcard status, and already has invitations to the Tour de Suisse and the Vattenfall Cyclassics. It will become the first Austrian team ever to ride the Ronde van Vlaanderen. As always, the Tour of Austria will be the team's highlight, but it is still negotiating for other top races and thinks it has good chances to get a bid to the Vuelta a España.

One prominent name is no longer associated with the team. Gerrit Glomser, who has been with the team since 2005, had a contract with the team only through February 28. No reason was given. The 34-year-old said that he was not ending his career and would announce his plans in a few weeks.

Team Vorarlberg-Corratec for 2009: Silvere Ackermann, Josef Benetseder, Andrea Capelli, Andreas Dietziker, Alexander Egger, Alexander Gufler, Rene Hasaelbacher, Reto Hollenstein, Pascal Hungerbühler, Philipp Ludescher, Harald Morscher, Daniel Musiol, Peter Presslauer, Elias Schmäh, Sebastian Siedler, Christoph Sokol, Matic Strgar, and Wim Van Huffel. (SW)