Organisers of the Tour of Britain today announced that the American Rock Racing team will be on the London start line of the 2008 race.
The squad, backed by clothing company Rock & Republic, are the latest major international team to confirm that they will be riding this year’s Tour of Britain, following similar announcements in recent weeks by Barloworld and Team Columbia (formerly Team High Road).
The American team are the twelfth team to be announced as riding this year’s Tour of Britain, and join a list of teams that combines Tour de France squads Barloworld and Team Columbia, with the very best teams from the British domestic calendar, like Rapha-Condor-Recycling, Plowman Craven and Pinarello RT.
Rock racing’s victor hugo pena in the tour of california.: rock racing’s victor hugo pena in the tour of california.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Leading the provisional Rock Racing line-up are a trio of well-known names in double American champion and top sprinter Fred Rodriguez, past Tour de France yellow jersey Victor Hugo Pena and former Lance Armstrong lieutenant, Tyler Hamilton.
Supporting them will be former World and Olympic Team Pursuit champion Peter Dawson and Rahsaan Bahati, who has been in great form so far this season, winning six races Stateside.
“We’re delighted to be able to confirm Rock Racing for this year’s race,” Tour of Britain Technical Director Mick Bennett said. “The team will be no doubt be bringing the same glamour and rock and roll feel to The Tour of Britain that they have been doing to races in America so far this season.
Rock racing always draws a crowd.: rock racing always draws a crowd.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
“I’m also sure that they will make a fantastic addition from a racing point of view, as they have a number of riders who should be able to win stages and possibly compete for the overall classification,” he added.
The Tour of Britain will announce shortly the remaining four teams who will take the start of the 2008 Tour, which begins at the very heart of London on Sunday 7th September. The 2008 race has been extended to eight days, and will finish in the 2008 European Capital of Culture, Liverpool, on Sunday 14th September.