The BMC Racing Team has its sights set on making a good first impression in its ProTeam debut Sunday in the Santos Tour Down Under.
It will be the second time BMC has raced in the Tour Down under. Last year, Cadel Evans finished sixth overall and earned the Most Aggressive jersey after Stage 5. Martin Kohler also wore the Best Young Rider jersey for a day and Tim Roe – who rode for Team UniSA – finished 13th overall.
Evans won’t be back at the Tour Down Under this year. Instead, the team will be working for the team’s sprinters, Alexander Kristoff and John Murphy.
“Our main focus will be to come out of this race with some ProTeam points,” BMC assistant sport director Michael Sayers said in a team release. “We have Kristoff and Murphy for the sprints, so we’ll primarily be riding for those guys the first couple of days. If things open up after a bit, we can let guys like Simon Zahner, Amaël Moinard, Alessandro Ballan and Kohler chase the breakaways. Tim is also very motivated and finished 10th in his national road race last weekend. So if we come out of the race with a couple top five finishes in the stages, that would be perfect.”
The race also marks BMC’s ProTour debut after earning the designation and license going into the 2011 season. Last year, BMC raced with a pro continental license.
BMC for Santos Tour Down Under Roster (Jan. 16-23)
• Alessandro Ballan (I)
• Martin Kohler (Swi)
• Alexander Kristoff (Nor)
• John Murphy (USA)
• Amaël Moinard (F)
• Tim Roe (Aus)
• Simon Zahner (Swi)