Team Type 1 - SANOFI Update: Tour of China Race Report and New Signings for 2012

Posted: Sep 21, 2011

Vladimir Efimkin holds on to 9th in a tightly contested Tour of China Team Type 1 - SANOFI rider Vladimir Efimkin sealed a top 10 overall finish in the Tour of China on Tuesday, completing the final criterium stage in the company of the same teammates who had escorted him through the nine stage race around Shaanxi province. Efimkin, who lives in Sacramento, came ninth overall after more than 1200km of racing, in a tight band of just 25 seconds separating the second and 10th placed athletes. Overall winner Muradjan Khalmuratov of Uzbekistan won by a than three minute margin after a slipping into a key breakaway on the second stage of the week-long race. Team Type 1 - SANOFI rider Joey Rosskopf was the highest placed rider from the squad on Tuesday, finishing 19th with the same time as the stage winner in the one hour and forty six minute event. Team Type 1 - SANOFI Director Sportif Michael Carter said Tuesday's finish was as aggressive as the start. "The course followed a river, down one bank and up the other, and lent itself to all-day aggression. Rosskopf tried over and over to cover the escapes, but an Iranian team was controlling the race for their sprinter, who won three stages here this week. A crash in the final 400m meant the Iranians' fourth win was not to be, but it also prevented our riders from finding a top-10 finish," Carter said. Team Type 1 - SANOFI riders Joe Eldridge, Fabio Calabria and Martijn Verschoor, who all have type 1 diabetes and must monitor their blood glucose continuously and periodically take insulin to control the disease, finished safely in the field, successfully completing the Tour of China. Eldridge, from Georgia, a sprint specialist who spent hundreds of kilometers on the front of the peloton to control its speed and provide a launch pad for Efimkin in the mountains, started stage nine with a BG at 150, and finished at 200. Verschoor, from the Netherlands, who contested the final sprints all week and benefited from his teammate's guidance in the last, chaotic kilometers of each day's racing, started with a BG at 200 and finished, in part due to the high-adrenaline pack sprint, at 290. Calabria, from Australia, spent his week ferrying bottles back and forth to protected teammates in need, and was a key rider in helping Verschoor at the finishes, started with a BG at 180 and finished at 225. Team Type 1 - SANOFI signs Colli, Preidler, welcomes Bodrogi, Bowden and Ino Ilesic back in 2012 Team Type 1 - SANOFI is pleased to welcome two new riders to the squad for the 2012 season and welcome back three strong veterans to the UCI Professional Continental outfit. Team Type 1 - SANOFI CEO and Founder Phil Southerland said the continued growth of the team is assured thanks to the strong selection of talented new and veteran riders, and the continued emphasis on developing professional cyclists with type 1 diabetes. "It's a team effort to put a squad in a race and bring cyclists to the start line. We're very pleased with the shape that next season's Team Type 1 - SANOFI line up is taking, and we will continue to grow from the very solid foundation built this year on the road. Alex Bowden has grown with us as a rider and an individual, and we've seen his very important quarterly diabetes report card -the medical test called the A1C- go from 9 to where it is now at 6.9, with nearly perfect control. He's a smart young man who shares the message of what taking control of your diabetes means, and he is a terrific advocate for all with the disease," Southerland said. Team Type 1 - SANOFI new riders in 2012 Daniele Colli - ITA Georg Preidler - AUT Team Type 1 - SANOFI continuing riders in 2012 Laszlo Bodrogi - FRA Aldo Ino Ilesic - SLO Alex Bowden* - USA * professional athlete with type 1 diabetes Team Type 1 - SANOFI General Manager Vassili Davidenko said the 2012 squad is filling out with a strong assortment of riders. "The type of experience Colli brings to us is very exciting. We look forward to putting him into the team for that extra strength and finesse that is needed to get onto the podium. He is a finisher of the highest calibre. Preidler is a widely sought-after young rider from Austria, with solid experience racing in Italy and a lot of ambition to succeed in the wider world. He has a smart, aggressive racing style, with the ability to attack repeatedly right up to the finish line," Davidenko said. Colli, 29, has seven years of professional racing experience in Europe and around the world, with a score of podium and top 10 appearances in some of 2011 hardest races. Most recently he sprinted to 8th place in Paris-Bruxelles following a stage three podium appearance in Italy's Settimana Ciclista Lombarda. At the Tour of Denmark in August he finished 8th on GC, with four top-10 finishes on the week. Preidler, 21, finished 7th overall in this year's Tour de l'Avenir, a stage race for professional U23 riders, and won the five-stage Coppa delle Nazione in Italy. He also won Italy's one-day GP Palio del Recioto and came fifth in Austria's national championship road race. Davidenko said the returning riders are all proven sources of speed, and will continue to race well and help spread the diabetes outreach message at the heart of Team Type 1 - SANOFI. "Alex Bowden has grown by leaps and bounds as an athlete with type 1 diabetes, and his progress from just a few years ago to now is remarkable to see. The experience he gained this year racing at the top level in the United States and in Europe, and his continued effective management and control of diabetes is really what our squad is all about," Davidenko said. "Laszlo is stronger at the end of a tough year than he has ever been, and his nomination to the French TT squad for Copenhagen is a reflection of his hard work, his professionalism and his leadership. We are very happy to have him and Aldo return to us next season, and to share their knowledge with our 2012 team," Davidenko said. Bodrogi was named to France's time trial squad for the upcoming UCI World Championships in Copenhagen. In 2007 he finished 2nd in the time trial at the World Championships in Stuttgart. This season he notched top-10 finishes at France's Circuit de la Sarthe and Italy's Settimana Coppi e Bartali, and finished fifth at the French National Championships in the time trial in June. He is an experienced veteran of European racing, having competed in all three Grand Tours, two Olympics and every major classic one-day race. Ilesic, 27, had two top-10 finishes this season, and was a key rider in European races from January through September. He also returned to the United States to bring experience and assistance to the squad in the Tour of California and the Philadelphia INternational Championship. Bowden, 22, raced across the United States as his athletic development continues. He notched top-20 results from February through September, and raced in Belgium in key events in March.