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Yates says things look dim

Sean Yates

Sean Yates (Image credit: Steve Dascomb)

Soon to be unemployed Discovery Channel assistant directeur sportif Sean Yates is taking a dim view of cycling's future in light of the announcement that the team's owner, Tailwind Sports, has decided to quit seeking sponsorship and disband the team at the end of the season.

In Germany for the Deutschland Tour, Yates was shocked at the news which came out on Friday about the team's demise. On his personal website, seanyates.co.uk, he described the atmosphere among the staff. "'Welcome to the morgue' - that's how one of the members of staff greeted me yesterday when I turned up at the team hotel here in Germany. It was then that the news I had received the previous evening really started to sink in. It was not just a bad dream, it was reality."

With dozens of staff members and riders suddenly thrust into the job market, Yates said that "Shock, Panic, etc. was the mood of the day." In an interview with dpa, Yates guessed that even Tour de France winner, Albert Contador, may not have an easy time finding a new team. He is "worth a lot of money, " but, Yates noted, his manager Tony Rominger "will have to do a lot of hard work in a difficult market."

"We were disappointed and shocked and learned that we have lived in a paradise the last few years," Yates told the dpa. "Those times are over now. The atmosphere for investors is not good because of the ongoing doping discussion. When even the team with the latest Tour winner, a team which has had the winner eight times in the last nine years, can't continue, then that is a bad sign."

Yates lamented the end of the team on his website, and expressed hope that he could stay in the sport. "I for one really want to stay in this line of work as you can all imagine, and have contacted a few teams with that in mind. I am hoping that in the next ten days or so I will have a good idea if that is possible or not."

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