Brian Vandborg, Volodymir Gustov and Andre Steensen left team-less as Saxo Bank did not renew their contracts for 2012

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Brian Vandborg, Volodymir Gustov and Andre Steensen left team-less as Saxo Bank did not renew their contracts for 2012

Team Saxo Bank-Sungard failed to renew the contracts of three of its riders, Brian Vandborg, Volodymir Gustov and Andre Steensen. It was declared earlier that the team was having financial issues and will not be signing any further riders in the coming season.

However, Alberto Contador believes that the team will include at least one more climber to assist him during the coming grand tours.

Contador’s request for hiring was mainly because of the fact that RadioShack-Nissan-Trek is very strong in this department.

Bjarne Riis commented on the bad financial conditions of his team. He told, “There is something called economic constraints. I have a budget for 2012, which I must respect and be consistent. So there is a reason why we have the riders we have”.

Steensen whose contract has not been extended by team Saxo Bank is positive to find a new team for himself. Steensen was quoted as saying by, “I unfortunately have not renewed my contract with Saxo Bank. Bjarne called me and told me that
he wanted to try some new riders”. 

The Danish rider further commented on the issue as he said, “Life does not end because I am not riding with Saxo Bank”.

The cyclist rode with the continental team, Glud & Mustard, before joining Saxo Bank and he is hopeful to rejoin his old team for the next season.

Steensen is not the only rider whose hopes were shattered by Bjarne Riis. It has been reported that Gustov and Vandborg will also be leaving the team in the coming season.

Gustov represented Team Fassa Bartolo from 2000 to 2005. He then joined Team CSC in 2006 and stayed with it till 2008. The 34-year-old was with Team Cervelo for 2009-10 and came to Bjarne Riis team in 2011.

Vandborg represented Team Saxo Bank for 2004-06 and spent one year each with Discovery Channel and Team GLS-Pakke Shop. He joined Team Liquigas for 2009-10 before finally moving to the Danish team in 2011.

To maintain a balance between his low finances and growing competition, Riis has mostly signed younger riders. Richie Porte has moved to Team Sky Procycling whereas Matteo Tosatto, Nicki Sorensen and Manuele Boaro have been re-signed by the team.

It has already been witnessed that a number of teams are merging for 2012. One of the best teams in sports, HTC-Highroad has announced its demise because of no sponsors.

Team Saxo Bank is another example of a team limiting its potential because of financial constrains. Therefore, Brian Vandborg, Volodymir Gustov and Andre Steensen will not be seen riding with their current team in the next season.

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