The Israel Cycling Academy today announced the signing of Norwegians Sondre Holst Enger, 23, and August Jensen, 26 through the end of the 2019 season. The pair join recent recruits Ben Hermans and Ruben Plaza in bolstering the ambitious Pro Continental team, which is seeking its first Grand Tour invitation in 2018.
Sports Director Kjell Carlstrom sees the signings as a step in the right direction for the team. "They are both fairly young but they have already amassed nice results and we believe they can do much more with us," Carlstrom said in a press release. "They are coming from a country that produces a lot of talents and we believe we got two of the best in the crop. Sondre already showed that he can fight for victory with the best sprinters in the World and August has great winning instincts that can go for victories in the Classics and short stage races."
Enger made a name for himself with a win last year in the Tour of Croatia after which he showed off his dance moves during the podium presentation and the video went viral. He is currently riding with AG2R La Mondiale, but has had less success with the French squad than with his former IAM Cycling team.
"He had a rough season with some sickness and difficulties," Carlstrom said. "However, we strongly believe that he will put it behind him. We will focus on bringing him into position for sprints in some of the big races and I am confident he can bring great results."
Enger also finished last year's Tour de France, coming third to Peter Sagan and Alexander Kristoff in the sprint on stage 16.
"One of my greatest moments was to arrive to the Champs-Élysées and feel all the energy surrounding the course after three hard working weeks," Enger said.
Jensen, currently with the Continental Team Coop, won a stage and finished second overall in the Arctic Tour of Norway this season, and won the points classification in two other UCI 2.2 stage races. He has ambitions for the spring Classics like the Tour of Flanders and Milan-San Remo and short stage races.
"I am so grateful to get the chance to be part of a team with high ambitions and an exciting goal to promote cycling in parts of the world with less of cycling tradition. With ICA I hope to race in bigger races and I am real confident that I can contribute with great results," Jensen said.