For 2009, Specialized has signed American Todd Wells and South African Burry Stander, former teammates at GT Bicycles. The two riders will join cross country World Champion Christoph Sauser, who will remain with the team for 2009.
"We believe that in terms of young talent, Burry is the guy for the future," said Ben Capron of Specialized. "In terms of team chemistry, he and Christoph are close friends. They started the Cape Epic together last year and have trained together in South Africa."
The pair had to pull out of the Cape Epic before the finish due to a knee injury sustained by Stander. However, the injury didn't slow down Stander for long. He was runner-up at the U23 World Championships in June.
"Christoph was instrumental in the recommendation of Burry," said Capron. "And Burry and Todd are really close, and we've always respected Todd's abilities. He's had his best World Cup season ever and is getting faster every year." Wells also represented the US at the Olympic Games in Beijing.
On the women's side, Norwegian Lena Byberg will continue as a member of the team.