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The Jelly Belly Cycling Team presented by Kenda has signed three-time U.S. National Champion and seven-time Tour de France rider Fred Rodriguez, it was announced today.

“We’re more than excited to obtain Fred Rodriguez and have him part of the team for the remainder of the season,” said team General Manager and Director Danny Van Haute. “Fred’s experience and leadership will be a huge asset for Team Jelly Belly p/b Kenda, not to mention he’s a great bike rider who will no doubt garner great results.”

Rodriguez raced for the now defunct Exergy team last season and showed well at major U.S. races like the Amgen Tour of California and USA Pro Challenge in Colorado, notching several top 10-stage placings.

“After dialogue with several teams, I decided Jelly Belly was a good fit,” said Rodriguez. “There are a lot of things this team does both on and off the bike that makes sense for me at this stage of my career.  The team has been a staple of American racing for more than a decade and I admire that stability. Plus, Jelly Belly Candy Company is a great company with great values to support.”

Van Haute added that Rodriguez had impressed him in recent races, and, coupled with his character and business approach, were an intriguing mix for both Jelly Belly and his team. He noted that along with current sprinter Brad Huff, the squad has a strong one-two punch in fast finishes.

The 39-year-old Rodriguez, who resides in Berkeley, said he’s been rejuvenated in recent years after racing his early career primarily in Europe.  He said he hopes to show well in major North American races Jelly Belly competes, beginning with the U.S.A. Cycling National Championships for road race later this month in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Nicknamed “Fast Freddie”, Rodriguez’s professional career spans more than 15 years. His career highlights include three U.S. professional road race wins in 2000, 2001, and 2004; stage wins in big European stageraces: Tour of Luxembourg, Tour of Switzerland and Tour of Italy.  He has won sprint points jerseys in the Tour of Switzerland and twice in the Tour de Georgia, at one time the largest American stage race. He was the long-time lead-out man for Aussie sprinter Robbie McEwen who amassed 12 Tour de France stage wins, many thanks to Rodriguez’s work.

Rodriguez also has many business interests, including his inaugural Fast Freddie Gran Fondo, scheduled for August 17, 2013, in Berkley.  Go to