When I call the season disappointing, don't get me wrong, I'm not discounting some real quality wins by Horner, Rosseler and especially Brajkovic. Still, they were clearly targeting the ToC, the Tour and the Vuelta this year. They didn't win the first, aren't invited to the third, and their money guy is now out of contention for the 2nd, though Leipheimer could of course still podium. You have to think the sponsor can't be all that happy with those results.
Thought I'd piggyback onto Mr Van P's Armstrong post. I kind of hate to post this because it's purely speculative - I have no knowledge of what's going on inside the team's or the sponsor's head. Worse, by asking this it could appear that I'm assuming the sponsor will bail. That's not my intention though. I guess what I mean to ask is this: given that this looks like it's going to be a pretty disappointing season for them, where do they go from here?
Any thoughts on what happens next? Right now it seems to me that they have one young potential star in Brajkovic. Do they build around him? And...I hate to ask...is a young Slovene with a lot of potential enough to keep an American sponsor interested? If I remember right, they've committed for 2 years of sponsorship. Again, I'm not trying to present a gloom and doom scenario here, just wondering where they go from here - shift their focus to different races? Bring in some new guys? As much as I respect Kloeden, Leipheimer, Horner et al, their days of being really competitive in GTs might be coming to an end.