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Team Specialized Designs for Women expands and improves for the 2008 season with Emma Pooley


The UCI women's trade team out of Zürich has undergone several changes for the next season with only six riders receiving a contract renewal and the addition of several new riders to support Emma Pooley at the International level.

From the 2007 team Daniela Della Torre, Sarah Grab winner of Merdingen, Mirjam Hauser-Senn, Larssyn Rüegg and the German Birgit Söllner winner of the Strassenrennens von Rosenheim have all received new contracts and will be riding in the colors of Specialized Designs for Women in the up-coming season. In addition to these five we are happy to have Emma Pooley remain in the team leader position for the 2008 season.

One new arrival to the team is the German sprinter Tannja Hennes coming from the Bigla Cycling Team. At the age of thirty-six Hennes has over twenty years of racing experience and will be a great strength to the team both tactic situations as well as the sprint. Along with Tanja come two Swiss riders, Monika Furrer and Andrea Knecht, who have also transferred over from Bigla Cycling Team. During the 2006 season Furrer proved herself to be a strong domestic with very consistent results. Knecht had a late start to the season due to a back injury but made a good recovery to win her home race in Wetzikon, Switzerland and to finish the Giro d'Italia. Another new transfer is Kristen LaSasso, USA, bringing a lot of experience from Team Lipton one of the strongest North American teams. In addition to these riders the young Korean, Min Hye Lee, joins us. She rode to her first victory Swiss victory in Visp winning a two up sprint after breaking away with Nicole Cooke. Lee is the current Korean time-trial champion as well as the Asian pursuit champion. She currently resides at the UCI-Center in Aigle, Switzerland. The young Danish rider Karina Hegelund Nielsen completes the team of twelve riders. In the 2007 season Nielsen raced as a very successful junior winning the Danish professional women's road race national championships. Next year as her first year senior she will already be wearing the Danish national championships jersey.

Roger Rüegg will continue as team manager for his next third season running the team. Working with Rüegg are Patrick Banfi and Ernst Meier as sportive directors, Erich Küng leading Soigneur, and Dani Reinhart media.

2008 Roster:

Della Torre DanielaSUI 1986Watt-Regensdorf
Furrer MonikaSUI 1985Madetswil
Grab SarahSUI 1979Malans
Hauser-Senn MirjamSUI 1980Ennetbürgen
Hegelund Nielsen KarinaDEN 1989Esbjerg / Dänemark
Hennes TanjaGER 1971Attendorn / Deutschland
Knecht AndreaSUI 1983Gibswil
LaSasso KristenUSA 1975La Canada, CA / USA
Lee Min HyeKOR 1985Aigle / Südkorea
Pooley EmmaGBR 1982Zürich / Grossbritannien
Rüegg LarssynUSA 1985Zürich / USA
Söllner BirgitGER 1973Nürnberg / Deutschland


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