The 2013 Argos-Shimano team was recently unveiled in Altea Hills, Spain, site of the team’s winter training center on the warm and sunny Mediterranean coast. Both the men’s and women’s riders will once again race Felt bikes throughout the season, which promises new challenges ahead with the squad’s newly gained World Tour status.
After a highly successful 2012 season, which saw John Degenkolb win five stages o the Vuelta a España and Marcel Kittel collect more than 10 race wins, the team was chosen by the UCI to make the jump up to World Tour status. That means the men’s team will have automatic entry to the most prestigious events including grand tours, spring classics and other major stage races and one-day events.
“This World Tour license is a reward for the combination of a strong group of riders and innovative coaching staff who have managed to get into the World Tour through their own efforts,” said the team’s general manager Iwan Spekenbrink. “It’s greatly satisfying to work with a team that’s growing mainly through developing itself.”
John Degenkolb, Marcel Kittel and Tom Veelers (left to right) hanging out in Spain at the team’s 2013 introduction.
The ages of the 28 riders on the men’s team make Argos-Shimano the youngest team in the World Tour, and Spekenbrink said he expects continued growth for his squad in 2013.
Spekenbrink also credited the team’s sponsors, including Felt, for the team’s development, saying, “They have enabled us to achieve this and really believe in using a sustainable policy like ours in building a top sporting organization.”
During the team introduction, management also emphasized the team’s “1t4i” guidelines, which stands for “inspiration, integrity, improvement and innovation.”
The 2013 season gets underway next week with the January 20-27 Santos Tour Down Under in Australia. The men’s team will be racing its Felt F1 bikes, and later this month will be receiving its new-for-2013 bikes, engineered with UHC Nano TexTreme carbon fiber.
2013 Argos-Shimano Roster
Men: Warren Barguil, Thomas Damuseau, Yann Huguet, Thierry Hupond, Matthieu Sprick (FRA), Nikias Arndt, John Degenkolb, Johannes Fröhlinger, Simon Geschke, Patrick Gretsch, Marcel Kittel (GER), Roy Curvers, Tom Dumoulin, Koen de Kort, Ramon Sinkeldam, Tom Stamsnijder, Albert Timmer, Tom Veelers (NED), Tobias Ludvigsson, Jonas Ahlstrand (SWE), Reinardt Janse van Rensburg (RSA), Luka Mezgec (SLO), Tom Peterson (USA), Cheng Ji (CHN), François Parisien (CAN), Bert de Backer (BEL), Georg Preidler (AUT), Will Clarke (AUS).
Women: Charlotte Becker, Elke Gebhardt, Marlen Jöhrend (GER), Janneke Busser, Willeke Knol, Kelly Markus, Amy Pieters, Esra Tromp, Kirsten Wild (NED), Lucy Garner (GBR).
Coaches: Christian Guiberteau (FRA), Adriaan Helmantel, Marc Reef, Rudi Kemna, Addy Engels, Jorn Knops, Aike Visbeek, Cees-Jan van der Zweep (NED).
General Manager: Iwan Spekenbrink (NED)