Colombian climber steps up to the WorldTour next season
The BMC team has announced the signing of Colombian climber Darwin Atapuma for 2014.
"We are happy to welcome Darwin to the team for 2014," team manager Jim Ochowicz said in a press release. "He has shown on several occasions at ProTour races this year his skills in the mountains. He will be a great asset to the BMC Racing Team in the Grand Tours and other stage races."
Atapuma has performed consistently well in 2013 and won the mountainous sixth stage at the Tour of Poland, while riding for the Colombia Professional Continental team. He also finished second in the climber's competition.
"To go to the ProTour completes my dream. I know it will be a difficult task. My objective is to work for the team and for the team's leaders, so I will give my best," Atapuma said.
The BMC team has signed a number of riders for 2014 as it looks to make up from disappointing performances from team leaders Philippe Gilbert and Cadel Evans and the exit of head directeur sportif John Lelangue. The team recently said that Valerio Piva will join as a directeur sportif in 2014.
Peter Stetina, Peter Velits and Rick Zabel have all been announced as joining the team, while Taylor Phinney has extended his contract.
Riders set to leave include Italian national champion Ivan Santaromita, who is going to Orica-GreenEdge, and Mathias Frank, who is joining IAM Cycling. Several other riders have still to be confirmed or released by the US-registered team.
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