| Alvaro Crespi, Mapei's Team Manager has announced the nine riders that will represent Mapei-Quick Step at the Tour de France.
World Champion, Oscar Freire will ride in support of Tom Steels and will look to gain experience and form to prepare for the rest of the World Cup Classics.
Other riders making their debut at the French race are Hungarian, Lazlo Bodrogi, Austrian Gerhard Trampusch and Frenchman Miguel Martinez.
Adding to the international flavor, the rest of the roster includes Spaniards David Caņada and Pedro Horrillo and the young South African sensation Robert Hunter. "The Gladiator", Andrea Tafi will be the only Italian influence in the team.
The team will be directed by Serge Parsani, in his 10th Tour de France.