Transfer round-up: Geoghegan Hart joins Sky as Yates bros extend deals
Highly rated young British rider Tao Geoghegan Hart has joined Team Sky for the 2017 season, after signing his first professional contract with the British Worldtour squad.
The 21-year-old U23 national road race champion has been a target of Sky’s for a while and originally rode as a stagiaire with the team last year, competing at the Japan Cup. However, he decided to continue racing with American Continental squad Axeon Cycling Team this season before signing with Sky for one year.
Geoghegan Hart is currently racing at the eight-stage Tour de l’avenir for Great Britain — known as the Tour de France for U23 riders — and finished fourth on the opening stage.
“It’s super exciting for me,” he said. “This season was about getting another year stronger, becoming more consistent, and developing as a rider and as a person, before making the big step up from a Continental team to a Worldtour team.”
Elsewhere, Adam and Simon Yates have both extended their contracts with Orica-bikeexchange for two years, keeping them with the Australian squad until the end of 2018.
The Bury-born duo both see their futures racing in Grand Tours, with Adam finishing fourth at the Tour de France and winning the young rider’s white jersey. Simon is currently racing at the Vuelta a España, having missed four months of the season due to a ban for a positive test due to an administrative error over his use of an inhaler.
Meanwhile, former world champion Philippe Gilbert is joining Etixx-quick Step from BMC, and three-time world time trial champion Tony Martin is moving from Etixx to Katusha on a two-year contract.