Basso signs long-term CSC contract
Basso is set to make the Tour podium for a second successive year
PAU, France -- Ivan Basso has agreed to stay with CSC for another three years, team manager Bjarne Riis has said.
Italian Basso is second in the Tour de France, two minutes and 46 seconds behind Lance Armstrong, and has been tipped by the six-times champion as the rider most likely to succeed him.
The news coincided with information technology company CSC announcing they would extend their sponsorship of the team until the end of 2008.
"Ivan Basso has also signed for three more years and will be our team leader in future editions of the Tour," said Riis.
"From being a talent and someone who constantly made the top 10 in many of the big races, he is now the future of cycling for the next couple of years.
"Ivan has never made a secret of the fact, that he likes being on our team, and that means a lot to us all," the 1996 Tour winner added.
"With us he has the full support and a team, where he fits in well as a person. In Ivan we have a rider, who can one day win the Tour de France."
Basso, 27, finished third on the 2004 Tour and won two stages of the Giro d'Italia earlier this year.
He has been the only rider capable of staying with Armstrong in the mountains during this year's Tour and has vastly improved in time trials.
Talking about CSC's continued sponsorship, Riis said: "I see this sponsorship as the natural progression of the team and will give us the foundation to improve in the future and be competitive in the most important races such as the Tour de France and the ProTour competition."
The three-week Tour de France ends in Paris on Sunday.
|© 2007 Cable News Network LP, LLLP.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us. Site Map.