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Jack Bauer confirmed with Garmin Cervelo
Nov 18th, 11. 2012 has proved one of the hardest years to break into the World Tour peloton - but that is exactly what 26 year old Kiwi Jack Bauer has done.
In today's team launch in Boulder, Colorado, the 2010 NZ Road Champion was announced in the 2012 roster for Garmin Cervelo.
Bauer was not able to be at the event, but a Garmin Cervelo spokesperson confirmed to RoadCycling.co.nz the Kiwi was on the team.
Signing a contract with this pro-team puts Bauer one step closer to a dream he has had for quite some time.
"I would love to give the Classics a go. The Classics suit a kind of strong style of rider, not a mountain goat. If you've got a lot of power and you are strong, weight doesn't come into it. One day I'll be there at Flanders, on the cobbles, in the mud," he told RoadCycling.co.nz last year in a candid interview.
2012 might see that dream come true.
Bauer, a previous top mountain biker, has been racing on the roads in Europe for three years - this contract signals the start of another phase of his career.
In 2009 Bauer spent nine months racing in Belgium's amateur scene. After a good number of successes he was signed the following year by Endura Racing Team and raced predominantly in the UK, where he earned more victories.
This season he moved to Girona, Spain, lived amongst pro-tour cyclists, and raced a much broader continental circuit with Endura.
He finished 9th on GC in the UCI2.2 Tour de Normandie in France, 2nd overall at the UCI2.2 Olympia's Tour in the Netherlands, but his 2011 breakthrough came when he won a stage of the UCI2.1 Tour of Utah in the USA where he was racing alongside riders who are now his teammates.
The Tour of Utah was supposed to be a warm up event for his next big goals, the Tour of Britian and the UCI World Championships. In the latter he raced both the road and time trial events and for the second year in a row placed well in the TT, 19th, but unfortunately he, and the other two Kiwis, were caught behind a big crash in the road race.
Bauer was disappointed, he wanted to prove his worth ahead of the London Olympics. He felt he was in the best form of his life, which he credited to the move to Spain and the step up in racing.
"I've learnt a lot this season - tactically how to race better and smarter, how to eat, train and live better to improve my riding. I've been able to pick up a lot off my teammates this season as well as my director who lives in Girona. It all makes a difference come race day," he said in September.
Bauer, a relative late bloomer to the top level of road cycling, will have plenty of race day opportunities to shine in 2012 and a World Tour team to do it with.
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