Colbrelli signs for Bahrain Merida
Team Bahrain Merida has confirmed the signing of Sonny Colbrelli for the 2017 season. The Italian sprinter will join Vincenzo Nibali, Giovanni Visconti, Manuele Boaro and more at the new team. Borut Bozic and Kanstantsin Siutsou were also named in the team’s line-up for next year, bringing the number of confirmed riders up to six so far.
Colbrelli turned professional in 2012 and has spent his entire career with the Bardiani-CSF team. This season he has taken victories in the GP di Lugano, Tour de Limousin and most recently stage 5 of the Tour du Poitou-Charentes. He also took top 10 placings at Milan-San Remo and the Amstel Gold Race.
"I'm really happy to join this new team. Immediately after the establishment of the team, I was contacted to join this new exciting project. They believe in my value and me so I would like to repay their trust soon with some beautiful success. I will work hard to succeed in this," Colbrelli said in a team statement.
Knetemann joins Poitou-Charentes Futuroscope 86
Roxane Knetemann is the latest rider to leave the Rabo Liv team for pastures new, as the team tries to find a new sponsor. Knetemann will join the French Poitou-Charentes Futuroscope 86 for next season, she confirmed on Saturday.
"After 5 great years at @raboliv I'm really happy to let you know I will be riding next year for @pcfuturoscope86 I'm really looking forward for this new chapter," wrote Kneteman.
Kneteman has been with the Rabobank team since 2012, but with the sponsorship set to run out at the end of this year and no new deal as of yet the team’s top riders have been looking elsewhere. Olympic Champion Anna van der Breggen recently signed for Boels Dolmans while Lucinda Brand has joined Liv Plantur. Pauline Ferrand-Prevot and Kasia Niewiadoma have also been linked with moves elsewhere.
Poitou-Charentes Futuroscope 86 will be sponsored by the French national lottery FDJ for at least the 2017 and 2018 seasons.
Clement moves to LottoNL-Jumbo
With IAM Cycling due to fold at the end of this season, Stef Clement has found a new home at the LottoNL-Jumbo team. The time triallist has penned a two-year deal with the Dutch outfit. Clement is one of seven IAM Cycling riders that have secured deals for at least the 2017 season.
The 33-year-old Clement is a veteran of 12 Grand Tours and has been Dutch national champion four times. He spent six seasons with the Rabobank team, between 2009 and 2014, before joining IAM Cycling in 2015.
“I heard in May that IAM Cycling was about to quit as a team after this season," Clement said in a team press release. "At that moment, I was on a mountain with a broken collarbone, doing a training camp at altitude. I didn’t have a good spring, and I didn’t have too much to count on in negotiations, but I had to look for a new team. I kept on working on myself since that moment. That’s why I went to IAM Cycling in the first place. To develop myself as a person and as a rider and this is a good moment to return to the place where I want to be the most."
After finishing 18th at this year’s Tour de France, Clement hopes to use his experience to help the team’s general classification leaders "I come to the team to help the overall competitors uphill," Clement said.
"I never experienced how it feels to go for a strong result in the general classification of a Grand Tour. Now I did, I think that I will be able to support our front men more accurately. I didn’t improve in my time trial in Switzerland, and while I was busy working on myself, Team LottoNL-Jumbo improved as well. They were the strongest team in time trials, often. That was an eye-opener for me."
Barnes extends with Drops Cycling
Alice Barnes has extended her contract with the Drops Cycling team into the 2017 season. The first-year professional finished second to her sister Hannah at the national championships this season, giving her the under 23 national title. She recently finished second in the youth classification at the Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen last month.
"I am incredibly happy and very, very proud, that Alice has chosen to extend her time with us into 2017," said the team’s director Bob Varney. "She is the brightest young talent in Britain and to have her continued support of our vision for the future means a lot to us all. Alice’s ambition mirrors ours so we feel it’s a match made in heaven."