The new Australian professional team Fly V Australia presented by Successful Living announced the signing of eight-time Australian time trial champion Nathan O'Neill to its roster on Thursday. The 34-year-old from Queensland is returning to racing after serving a 15-month ban for using the appetite suppressant phenteramine.
O'Neill said he is fit, motivated and "raring to go", and pleased to be riding for a team from his home country after years spent in top teams in Europe and North America. "It's quite surreal to finally be riding for an Australian-registered professional cycling team. I am very appreciative of the team's confidence in my abilities and their decision to take me on. It's long been a dream of mine to race for an Aussie team – I didn't think I would get this opportunity. This is a great day for me personally and for Australian cycling."
Speaking about his role in the team O'Neill said, "I look forward to contributing to the establishment of a winning team culture as we embark on our first season together. We've put together a team that can contend for podium places in any race we enter. There are a number of young guys on our roster who are looking to step up – I'm looking forward to sharing my experience with them and helping them to make that step."
O'Neill is particularly excited by the prospect of racing with long time adversary and fellow Australian Time Trial Champion Ben Day. O'Neill said, "I think it's amazing to have two former Australian TT Champions on the same team. Ben will be an invaluable member of the team, both in the time trial and road races. I know he will be a threat for the GC all season long and I hope that together we can help bring some of the other guys along in the time trials, so everyone is a threat when we are racing for GC."
Fly V Australia p/b Successful Living (Australia unless otherwise noted): Alessandro Bazzana (Ita), Hayden Brooks, Jonathan Cantwell, Scott Davis, Benjanin Day, Charles Dionne (Can), Steven George, Michael Grabinger (USA), Curtis Gunn (USA), David Kemp, Benjamin King, Nathan O'Neill, Bernard Sulzberger, Phillip Zajicek (USA)