The Dutchman had a two-year contract with Jumbo-Visma already in place but he leaves for the Australian WorldTour team in order to increase his chances of riding the biggest races, such as the Tour de France.
The news of his move from Jumbo-Visma was announced on Saturday morning.
"Dylan’s desire to ride the biggest races is very understandable", said Jumbo-Visma boss Richard Plugge.
"We have always had an excellent relationship. That is why we decided to cooperate with his wish for a transfer. On the other hand, it’s a pity because Dylan is a great rider and a great man. I sincerely hope that he will be successful again on the highest podium."
Groenewegen has spent the last six years with Jumbo-Visma and won four Tour de France stages between 2017 and 2019. However, his Grand Tour role has been limited in the last two years with the emergence of both Primoz Roglic and Wout van Aert. This year Groenewegen rode the Giro d'Italia and although he did not win a stage he is still considered one of the fastest sprinters in the world.
"Team Jumbo-Visma is perhaps the best team in the world at the moment. The only reason I’m leaving is the sporting perspective", says the 28-year-old rider.
"I might miss the Dutch people around me and the Dutch mentality, but this opportunity was too good to pass up. I’m glad we quickly got out of it with both teams. We did so in a good and friendly way," said Groenewegen.
Team BikeExchange had a poor year by their standards in 2021. Michael Matthews, who returned from the team from Team Sunweb, went close several times but failed to win a race, while Kaden Groves is still developing as a sprinter. The arrival of Groenewegen at the Australian team seriously improves their sprinting capabilities.
Essentially, the deal works for all the parties concerned, and it gives Groenewegen a change of environment after a difficult period stemming from the ban that he received after sparking a crash at the Tour de Pologne that left Fabio Jakobsen with life-threatening injuries in 2020.
Groenewegen only started his 2021 season in May and has taken three wins in a year where he has mostly raced at a level below the WorldTour.
The arrival of Groenewegen at Team BikeExchange is a huge coup for the Australian team. It will provide them with one of the premier sprinters in the WorldTour, and take the pressure off Matthews and Groves over the course of next season.
Groenewegen typically doesn't rely on a huge lead-out train either and would fit with both the team's Grand Tour and one-day plans.
"There was no hesitating when this opportunity came around, having Dylan joining Team BikeExchange-Jayco is something which brings great excitement to the team, a truly classy rider who rounds off our 2022 roster in a perfect way. I would like to thank Richard Plugge and Team Jumbo-Visma for making the transfer an easy process for all parties. It’s been a constructive process for all people involved," said Team BikeExchange manager Brent Copeland.
"Dylan doesn’t need much of an introduction, everyone in the peloton knows him and the potential he has as a sprinter, as well as a great team player, and we certainly believe he will adapt perfectly to our team. Our team owner, Gerry Ryan, has created and supported, since the beginning of the negotiation, the right path to follow in order to secure such a great rider for our team’s future. Our performance staff, together with our Head Sport director Matthew White, are already at work to ensure Dylan has the full support he deserves in order to perform to the best of his ability, as well as fit into the environment of the team."
Groenewegen went on to describe the move as starting the next chapter in his career.
“First of all, I must thank Team Jumbo-Visma and all the staff and riders that I have been working with over the past six years. We have had amazing results together and I will always be grateful for this. Now it is time to start another chapter of my life and my professional career, and I strongly believe that joining Team BikeExchange-Jayco now is the right to move and environment for me to start winning again. Since I started to talk to Brent (Copeland) and the technical staff, I felt that this was the right place and it is an incredible opportunity, I am looking forward to fighting for important results with the team.”
With pain in our hearts, we will let @GroenewegenD go. He is one of the pillars of the succes of our team. We will miss him badly, we will cherish the memories and successes. All the best and good luck Dylan! 🖤💛 https://t.co/SlMvieVjw8December 11, 2021
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