Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team announced the addition of two riders, Antonio “Tony” Cruz and Brian Vandborg to the 2007 Team roster. Cruz returns to the Discovery Channel squad where he was a member for five years (2001-2005) while Vandborg comes to Discovery from the Danish CSC Team where he raced for three seasons.
Sports Director Johan Bruyneel was happy about his recent additions to the squad, commenting, “Brian and Tony both come to our Team with a high-level of professionalism and a proven history. I know that we will be able to count on these guys throughout the entire season in a variety or races.”
Bruyneel added, “With Tony, I’m happy to have him back with us as I know he left for personal reasons. It was an easy decision for me to make in re-signing him. Brian, on the other hand, is someone new to our Team but not an unknown to me. I have watched him for a few years now and his impressive World Championships Time Trial only confirmed to me that he was a rider I wanted on our Team.”
Both Vandborg and Cruz come to the Discovery Channel Team with experience and success at all levels of the Sport. The 25 year-old Vandborg joins the Discovery Channel Team after a successful 2006 campaign where he was crowned as the Danish National Time Trial Champion and finished his season with a near podium at the World Championships in the Time Trial event, placing fourth. Additionally, Vandborg won a stage at the 2005 Tour de Georgia, a race won by Discovery’s Tom Danielson.
Vandborg is optimistic that he will continue to win under Bruyneel’s watch. “Johan has a great reputation for developing riders and I am excited to work with him and be a part of this team. There are so many great riders on Discovery and I know I will have opportunities to learn from guys and be successful.”
Cruz has experienced success both internationally and domestically, most recently winning the Tour de Nez (Reno, NV) and finishing third at the USPRO Criterium Championship. Under Bruyneel’s leadership, Cruz was part of the winning teams at the 2005 Tour de Georgia and Giro d’Italia and won a stage win at the Tour de L’Ain (2004). Prior to joining USPS/Discovery, Cruz represented the United States at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
After spending the 2006 season racing domestically in the States, Tony commented about his return to the Pro Tour ranks. “After only 1-year away I realized just how much I missed European racing, in countries like Belgium and in races like Paris-Roubaix. I’m happy there was an opportunity for Johan to bring me back to the Discovery Team.”
Cruz and Vandborg are the seventh and eighth riders to join the 2007 squad. Other recent additions to the Team include: Levi Leipheimer, Sergio Paulinho, Tomas Vaitkus, Uros Murn, Gianni Meersman, and the Team’s first Chinese rider, Fuyu Li. The Team expects to finalize the 2007 roster over the next two months.