Vuelta winner Horner joins Lampre-Merida

January 30, 2014
Horner of the U.S. celebrates on the podium after retaking the overall lead in 19th stage of the Vuelta, Tour of Spain, cycling race from San Vicente de la Barquera to Alto del Naranco
Chris Horner of the U.S. celebrates on the podium after retaking the overall race lead in the 181-km 19th stage of the Vuelta, Tour of Spain cycling race from San Vicente de la Barquera to Alto del Naranco, September 13, 2013. REUTERS/Joseba Etxaburu

PARIS (Reuters) - Vuelta winner Chris Horner's long quest for a team finally ended on Thursday when Italian outfit Lampre said they had recruited the American.

"It's official. Now Chris Horner is a Lampre Merida rider," Lampre-Merida wrote on their Twitter feed.

The 42-year-old Horner won the 2013 Vuelta, becoming the oldest grand tour winner, but his contract with RadioShack -- now Trek Factory Racing -- was not renewed.

His previous best performance in a grand tour was ninth in the 2010 Tour de France.

Horner joins world champion Rui Costa of Portugal at Lampre, who finished 14th in the 19-team strong World Tour last year.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Sudipto Ganguly)