The Australian GreenEdge outfit has hired rider number 26 and 27 and they’ve almost reached their 30 rider limit. Still a few dollars left in the bank.
The latest to join up are South African Daryl Impey and Canadian Christian Meier. We don’t have much to say or intel to pass on about Impey other than still congratulating him on surviving his horrific crash after tangling with Theo Bos in the Tour of Turkey.
However, the bigger interest for Twisted Spoke is the move by Meier. He was a casualty of the Garmin and Cervelo merger, riding this year for UnitedHealthcare. When I covered the Tour of California for Cycle Sport magazine, I spend the week with the team, focusing on GC threat Rory Sutherland.
In that time I got the backstory on all the riders and Meier was of particular interest. He’s a quiet guy and DS Mike Tamayo described him as the “lone wolf” of the squad. Only 25, he’s got a big engine and Meier was one of the riders team physiologist Inigo San Millan — himself a former Garmin guy — was most excited about as far as potential.
On paper this could be a brilliant move by both Meier and GreenEdge. If the Aussies score a ProTour license — which is more than likely — then Meier is back riding in big races and learning from top talents like Stuart O’Grady and Simon Gerrans.
No matter what, Meier is banking major dollars. During the California tour, his agent told me the guy has essentially no expenses — he has a trailer parked for free on a friend’s property and he also stays with his Cali podium girlfriend. He’s making six figures with zero overhead.
When we interviewed Meier about his new UnitedHealthcare team, he kept his answers general and bland. He wasn’t revealing or quotable in the least. Which makes him either really smart or clueless and we couldn’t tell you which.
We can confirm he is making serious cash and may just have made a shrewd career move.