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89th Tour de France - Grand Tour
France, July 6-28, 2002
Tour de France news for June 21, 2002
Edited by Jeff Jones
Menchov, Osa and Mancebo in iBanesto's Tour team
Russian Denis Menchov and Spaniards Unai Osa and Francisco Mancebo will be part of iBanesto.com's Tour de France team, which will be built around its climbers. Menchov and Osa both rode well in the recent Dauphine Libéré, with the Russian winning the stage to Mont Ventoux. The rest of the teams includes Dariusz Baranowski, Santi Blanco, Jon Odriozola, José Vicente Garcia Acosta, José Iván Gutiérrez Palacios and Javier Pascual Rodriguez.
Surprisingly, Italian climber Leonardo Piepoli will not be part of the team, with the reserves being named as: Marzio Bruseghin, David Latasa Lasa, and Xabier Zandio Echaide.
Hondo gets the nod over Klöden
The Volta a Catalunya decided the fate of Andreas Klöden and Danilo Hondo in Telekom's Tour de France team after just two stages. Before the Volta started, Klöden was named as part of Telekom's Tour team despite not racing a great deal this year due to injury. On the other hand, the more consistent and faster Danilo Hondo was only picked as first reserve, despite the fact that Telekom is aiming to help Erik Zabel in the sprints as much as possible this year.
Hondo won the second stage in a bunch sprint, which contained a category 1 climb fairly close to the end. Klöden did not finish due to knee problems, and he is currently deciding whether to have an operation. That meant that Hondo was promoted to Telekom's main Tour team. "Danilo Hondo was the reserve, and now it is right that he gets a chance," said Telekom's spokesman Olaf Ludwig who specified that Hondo would be helping Zabel, who will be the boss in the Tour.
Telekom now has Zabel, Fagnini and Hondo as well as Rolf Aldag, Steffen Wesemann, Bobby Julich, Kevin Livingston, Guiseppi Guerini, and Alexandre Vinokourov. The reserves are now Udo Bölts and Matthias