Team Sky have signed French climber Kenny Elissonde to a two-year deal what will take him through the 2018 season with the British team, according to a report published Monday on VeloPro. Elissonde, 25, has ridden at the WorldTour level with FDJ since joining the team as a stagiaire in 2011.
Elissonde has ridden five Grand Tours, starting with every Vuelta a Espana since 2013 and the Giro d'Italia last year. His biggest win came in his first Vuelta in 2013, when he won the stage 20 summit finish in the Angliru. His only other professional win came during stage 2 of the French 2.1 race Paris-Corrèze.
Elissonde shone brightly in this year's Vuelta, however, taking the mountains jersey during the challenging 14th stage that finished on the Col d'Aubisque in France, wearing the jersey until the penultimate day, which finished on the Alto de Aitana.
Elissonde finished second to Robert Gesink (LottoNL-Jumbo) during stage 14, the Queen stage that featured three categorised climbs before the summit finish. He joined a large breakaway that escaped early in the day, then was part of a six-rider group that attacked toward the end of the descent off the third climb and carried a lead of around 30 seconds to the foot of the Aubisque.
Eilssonde was the first to attack on the climb and looked like he was in with a chance for the win after jettisoning several of his breakaway companions, but Gesink soon caught the group Elissonde was in and flew past. Elissonde recovered to finish second on the day and won the blue polka dot mountains jersey as his reward. He finished fourth the next day and was also fifth during stage 6.
He concluded the Spanish Grand Tour 20th overall, 42:26 behind winner Nairo Quintana (Movistar).