Dutch national time trial champion Annemiek van Vleuten will leave the shadows of world champion Marianne Vos and race with the Bigla Cycling Team for the next two years, the team announced today.
Van Vleuten, winner of this year's Giro Donne prologue in addition to her national title and the overall Lotto Belisol Belgium Tour is looking forward to the change.
"I've had a great time with the Rabobank-Liv team racing with Marianne Vos the past seasons and now I feel it's time for a new challenge in my career," Van Vleuten said.
She will be joined in the team by new manager Thomas Campana, who previously led the Cervelo women's team to the top of the worldwide rankings.
"My time trial has had a real progression this season and when I was thinking about a new team I was thinking of my goals for the next two years, and I thought I'd like to keep improving my time trial for 2015 and then focus on the 2016 Rio Olympics. I thought I need experienced people around me and good equipment. I know Thomas Campana has helped a lot of riders become world class athletes so it made sense for me. I'm also looking forward to the Classics season. We're building a very strong team and I am excited to work with all of the girls."
Campana is looking to raise the level of the team, which has struggled against the larger squads. "I've been working with some key people over the past few months to put this together and we're delighted to have the Bigla company support this dream," Campana said.
"Our goals are to be the one of the best teams in the world and to give our riders the best environment in order for them to realise their dreams like the 2016 Rio Olympic games. We also want to be focused on our sponsors and partners and reward them for having the faith in this exciting opportunity."
Van Vleuten is the first of several new signings to be announced, with more to come in the near future.