Team Sky Announces Three New Signings for 2011
Team Sky has announced three new signings for the 2011 season. The team has signed Rigoberto Uran, Xabier Zandio and Alex Dowsett.
Earlier today Team Sky announced that it has signed contracts with three additional riders for the 2011 season. The team has signed Rigoberto Uran, Xabier Zandio and Alex Dowsett.
"These signings will strengthen our squad even further for our second season on the road. Rigoberto and Xabier join from Caisse d'Epargne and both should come to the fore in the mountains in the Grand Tours, an area we have been keen to focus on," Team Principal Dave Brailsford commented.
Brailsford added "Rigoberto is a super-talented rider who has some great results to his name this year and we are delighted that he has committed his future to Team Sky. He's a young rider with fantastic prospects, exactly the sort of person we have been keen to get on board. He's an excellent climber who has already shone in the Grand Tour environment and I'm sure he will continue to go from strength to strength.
"Xabier is a rock-solid climber who brings us real experience; he is someone who will give his teammates absolutely everything in the mountains on exactly the sort of stages which decide Grand Tours."
The addition of neo-pro Dowsett takes the British contingent in Team Sky's squad up to nine, six of whom are aged 25 or under. "I'm delighted that Alex is joining us; he's a young rider who has come through the British system with flying colours and will fit perfectly into our set-up," so Brailsford.
"We know just how talented Alex is and he's been showing that this year, winning the Under-23 individual time trial at the European Championships in Turkey this summer and getting some excellent results for the Trek-Livestrong U-23 squad. He's a real all-rounder with an incredibly bright future and we are looking forward to him developing with us at Team Sky and achieving his full potential.
"These three new additions sum up our squad perfectly - a blend of developing talent and Grand Tour experience with a strong British influence at the heart of it," Brailsford concluded.
Rider bios for Team Sky's three latest new riders:
Rigoberto Uran, Colombia: Aged 23 and already a professional for five years he is established as one of the brightest talents, placed in the top 100 of the UCI world rankings. Made his mark winning stage seven of the Tour de Suisse in 2007 for the Unibet.com team. Joined Caisse d'Epargne in 2008 and at the end of that season he was third at the Giro di Lombardia, one of the Monuments of the sport. At the 2010 Giro d'Italia he was seventh in the individual time trial up to Plan de Corones, took two second places at the Tour de Suisse on the way to seventh overall, and registered two top 10 finishes at the Vuelta a España.
Xabier Zandio, Spain: The hugely experienced Zandio has spent his whole career with Caisse d'Epargne. He turned pro in 2001 when it was the iBanesto.com team (later to become Illes Balears) and has competed in 10 Grand Tours, including five successive appearances at the Tour de France. The 33-year-old has worked selflessly for his team no matter what the terrain and is one of the most respected climbing domestiques on the circuit.
Alex Dowsett, England: A former member of the British Olympic Academy development team and the reigning Under-23 European time trial champion. The 21-year old will represent England at the Commonwealth Games after contesting the World Championship U-23 time trial and road race in Melbourne. Has shone in his debut season with Lance Armstrong's Trek-Livestrong U-23 development team, wearing the leader's jersey for a day at the Tour de l'Avenir, the 'mini Tour de France' for U-23 riders.