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by Neal Rogers
July 1, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Boels-Dolmans wins opening team time trial at Giro Rosa; Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation announces anti-doping measures for Tour de France; Quintana: ‘The biggest rival is still Chris Froome’; Cavendish: ‘Sometimes following the right wheel is enough for winning’; Dan Martin: ‘I’m very optimistic about my chances’; Froome extends with Team Sky through 2020; Fuglsang extends with Astana through 2019; Bardet, Latour, Naesen extend with Ag2r La Mondiale through 2020; Trek, Specialized launch new road framesets on eve of Tour de France; Coryn Rivera extends with Team Sunweb through 2021; Wiggins hopes to compete in rowing at 2020 Olympics; Lance Armstrong launches daily Tour de France podcast.
Romain Bardet, Pierre Latour and Oliver Naesen have extended their contracts with the Ag2r La Mondiale through 2020, team manager Vincent Lavenu announced Friday in Düsseldorf during the pre-Tour de France team press conference.
Bardet finished second overall at the 2016 Tour de France, and has won two stages. Latour won a stage of the 2016 Vuelta a España, and was recently crowned French national time trial champion; he’s making his Tour debut on Saturday. Naesen, the recently crowned Belgian national champion, had a breakthrough classics season this year, finishing third at E3 Harelbeke and sixth at Dwars Door Vlaanderen, and he rode strongly at the Tour of Flanders until he was taken down in a late-race crash on the Oude Kwaremont with Peter Sagan.
“We are pleased and proud to be able to make this announcement,” Lavenu said. These three contract extensions will provide a solid foundation for the team with a view to the coming seasons. They are all very talented riders. And we were able to make these offers thanks to the loyalty of our sponsor. We are reaping the fruits of the hard work put in by the entire staff for years in an effort to continue to progress. Romain, Pierre and Oliver are three sure bets. Romain is a great champion, ready to succeed in the biggest races on the UCI WorldTour calendar. Pierre is a great hope, and is quickly growing and progressing. And we have not even discovered where Oliver’s limits are.”