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The Caisse d’Epargne cycling team on Wednesday released a short-list of 10 riders from which the team will select nine to start the Tour de France, which runs from July 4-26.
Six of them, the Spaniards David Arroyo, Ivan Gutierrez, Luis Pasamontes, Luis Leon Sanchez, Xabier Zandio and 2006 Tour winner Oscar Pereiro are assured of their places on the start line in Monaco.
The three final places are being contested by Portugal’s Rui Costa, Frenchman Arnaud Coyot, Spain’s Jose Joaquin Rojas and the Colombian Rigoberto Uran.
The final squad for the Tour de France will be named after the various national championships taking place on Sunday.
Spain’s Alejandro Valverde is banned from racing in Italy, which boasts a stage in this year’s Tour on July 21, and has not been selected.