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by Shane Stokes
September 1, 2015
Photography by Cor Vos
Responding to media reports Monday suggesting that Bobby Julich and Daniel Healey had been fired from the Tinkoff-Saxo squad, the team has described the stories as incorrect reporting and clarified the situation.
“All parties had agreed to make this announcement once the season was over in order not to distract the team while at the races, but now feel the need to make an official joint statement to clear things up,” it said.
“At no time were Bobby Julich or Daniel Healey fired from Tinkoff-Saxo. Several weeks ago, a mutual decision was made on behalf of all parties involved to end their professional relationship due to a difference in opinion regarding the future vision of the team. This decision was reached amicably.”
It added that it holds both in high regard and wishes them well for the future.
Healey joined the team earlier this year and slotted into the new position of head of sports science. He was previously head of nutrition for New Zealand’s high performance sports system between 2008 and 2012 and has experience of coaching professional road and track cyclists.
Julich is a former pro who finished third overall in the 1998 Tour de France and raced with teams such as Motorola, Cofidis, Crédit Agricole, Telekom and Bjarne Riis’s Team CSC, the previous incarnation of Team Saxo Bank and Tinkoff-Saxo.
After his retirement he acted as technical director for Team Saxo Bank until November 2010. He then worked as time trial coach with Team Sky for two seasons but left in October 2012 after admitting doping during his career.
He moved to the BMC Racing Team in 2014 and then left that position to take up the new role of head coach with Tinkoff-Saxo earlier this year. The role saw him overseeing all of the other coaches on the team.
He is described in glowing terms on the team website. “Julich is an incredibly capable coach that has progressed tremendously in recent years. He is considered an asset for any team as he joined Tinkoff-Saxo with motivation and great experience.”
Their impending departure follows the exit earlier this year of the team’s founder and former owner Bjarne Riis. He had a falling out with the new owner Oleg Tinkov, who had purchased the team from him in December 2013.