German squad Milram has unveiled its nine-man line-up for the 2009 Tour de France in Dortmund today.
Linus Gerdemann and Gerald Ciolek have been announced today as joint leaders for Milram’s young Tour team. Only one of the nine riders is over 30.
Gerdemann, 26, is the squad’s choice for overall contention, although realistically he has only an outside chance of success. Ciolek, 22, is their man in the sprints
“Our main goal is a stage win at the Tour de France,” said Milram manager Gerry van Gerwen. “We can do well in the mountains as well as in the sprints.
“Linus Gerdemann is our man for the GC. He will have our complete support.
“In addition to Gerdemann we will have enough other options. There is always a lot to win at the Tour. We are ready for it with our young and hungry team.”
Milram have had something of a quiet year so far, with Gerdemann’s overall victory at the Bayern-Rundfahrt in May the highlight of the squad’s season so far.
“I couldn’t take part in the  Tour de France due to an injury,” Gerdemann said. “That just makes me doubly motivated this year.
“I have conscientiously prepared myself like never before for this Tour de France. I gladly accept the responsibility to lead the only German ProTour team at the Tour.”
Gerdemann won stage seven of the 2007 Tour de France when riding for T-Mobile, and subsequently enjoyed a spell in the yellow leader’s jersey.
One rider we’ll be watching out for is Niki Terpstra. The 25-year-old Dutchman is definitely on form coming into the Tour, with stage wins at the Dauphine Libere and Ster Elektrotoer in the last month. He could be the revelation for a team hungry for success.
The Tour de France starts on July 4 with an opening time trial in Monaco, and finishes on Sunday July 26 in Paris.
Milram 2009 Tour de France team
Gerald Ciolek (Ger)
Markus Fothen (Ger)
Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger)
Linus Gerdemann (Ger)
Christian Knees (Ger)
Niki Terpstra (Ned)
Peter Velits (Svk)
Fabian Wegmann (Ger)
Peter Wrolich (Aut)
Tour de France 2009 – Cycling Weekly’s full coverage