Andy Schleck to Lead RadioShack at 2013 Tour

The younger of the two cycling phenoms, the Schleck brothers, will be leading the RadioShack Team at the Tour de France this year.

Andy Schleck will be the leader of the Team when the Tour starts on June 29 in Corsica, according to a news update from the team general manager Luca Guercilena.

“We are happy to see that Andy is back,”  said Guercilena in a written statement.  “The Tour de Suisse encouraged and convinced us to give him the role he deserves and to give him the opportunity to have dedicated riders surrounding and supporting him.”

Though Guercilena said the team won’t put pressure on Schleck to place on the podium, making him the leader does just that.

The 27-year-old Luxembourgish rider has always shown great promise, and came close to finishing the Tour in top position in 2010, when he sat in second position after Alberto Contador.

The Spaniard later lost his Yellow Jersey when banned substances were found in his test sample, and Schleck won first place after the results of a Court of Arbitration for Sport hearing in 2011.

The brothers Schleck shared water in Grenoble before the TDF 2011 final time trial, which passed first place to Australian Cadel Evans. (c) Benepe

In 2011, Andy Schleck was second on the podium after Cadel Evans, the Australian narrowly beating him in a better time trial result in the second to last stage.

But the young man from Luxembourg didn’t even start the 2012 Tour last year because of a cracked pelvis he sustained in the Criterium Dauphine.

Team RadioShack Leopard Trek has two other Tour de France specialists:  Andreas Klöden, 37, who supported then Team RadioShack’s Lance Armstrong in the 2009 Tour and has finished second overall twice (in 2004 and 2006), and Haimar Zubeldia who has finished four times in the top ten overall.

Other riders on the team include Jan Bakelants, Laurent Didier, Tony Gallopin, Markel Irizar, Maxime Monfort, and Jens Voigt. Voigt, 41, will be one of if not the oldest rider in the Tour this year.

Belgian time trial champion in 2004, Maxime Monfort who has previously ridden for Cofidis and Team Columbia-HighRoad is well known for his spectacular breakaways.  Last year he was 16th overall in the Tour de France.

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