Orica-GreenEDGE extend rider deals

Written By Unknown on Senin, 18 November 2013 | 23.40

Orica GreenEDGE rider Brett Lancaster drinks ater after the 18th stage of the Tour de France earlier this year. Source: Sarah Reed / News Limited

INVALUABLE experience and the attraction of more Grand Tour success are among the motivating factors behind Brett Lancaster and Svein Tuft's contract extensions with Orica-GreenEDGE.

Olympic and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Lancaster, 34, and Canadian Tuft, 36, agreed to new two-year deals after sharing in OGE's watershed Tour de France glories this year.

With the departures of Stuart O'Grady and Baden Cooke, Lancaster and Tuft will be tapped for leadership and endurance qualities.

Both remain world-class time-triallers, but the pair's tactical savvy is just as critical as the team pushes to convert talented young riders to world-class competitors as quickly as possible.

"I really enjoy working with the younger riders," Lancaster said. "They have good heads on their shoulders.

"Guys like Luke Durbridge are so eager and all ears. I like passing along what I've learnt and helping them out by showing them the ropes."

Lancaster's work ethic was decisive in his re-signing.

"We're very pleased to renew Brett's contract," OGE sport director Matt White said.

"He played a part in some of our biggest rides and secured some nice results for himself.

"This past year, he won a stage in Slovenia, rode consistently throughout the entire Giro with our normal sprint group, won the team time-trial at the Tour de France and was one of the strongest performers in our silver-medal ride in the team time-trial at the world championships."

Part of the world record-setting 4000m pursuit team at the 2004 Athens Olympics, Lancaster wants to finish his career with OGE.

"I have another two years signed, but in my head I want do three more before I call it quits when I'm 37," Lancaster said.

"Five years with GreenEDGE would be a dream.

"The choice (to extend) was simple. I wanted to stay on the team. I wasn't really thinking about going anywhere else. The last two years have been very memorable. I've achieved some incredible things. I'm looking forward to another two years with GreenEDGE.

"The Tour this year was pretty awesome.

"Winning the team time-trial and standing on the podium with all the boys was really special.

"The team's owner, Gerry Ryan, and his son Andrew were there to witness it all. That was definitely the highlight - the highlight from two years with many, many memorable moments."

Eight-time Canadian time-trial champion Tuft again showed remarkable strength in a variety of roles.

He won the individual time-trial at the Tour of San Luis in Argentina and Tour of Slovenia before joining Durbridge in a record-breaking ride at the Duo Normand two-man team time-trial in France.

And he was hugely effective in OGE's Tour de France team time-trial triumph in Nice.

"Svein is one of the rocks in our team," White said.

"He's one of the most reliable guys we've got. He's a super teammate who is also very accomplished in his own right.

"It's great news that Sveino wants to retire with us. He's a big benefit to all the younger guys on the team - to everyone, for that matter."

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