HTC-Highroad cycling team to disband after season

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) - Top professional cycling team HTC-Highroad is folding after five years in the sport following an unsuccessful effort to secure a long-term sponsor.

Team owner Bob Stapleton announced the decision Thursday, urging riders such as 20-time Tour de France stage winner Mark Cavendish of Britain, top time trialist Tony Martin of Germany and up-and-coming American Tejay van Garderen to find new teams for 2012.

The American squad has been one of pro cycling's most successful since it was formed, winning 484 races, including 54 grand tour stages. Stapleton said the team's "success has been based on our outstanding people" and he was making the decision to disband the team now so that they could find teams in 2012.

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