Formolo signs with Bora-Hansgrohe to target Grand Tours

Bora-Hansgrohe has announced that Italy's Davide Formolo will ride for the German WorldTour team for the 2018 and 2019 seasons as he continues to develop as a Grand Tour and stage race rider. The 24-year-old from Verona finished ninth in the 2016 Vuelta a Espana and tenth in this year's Giro d'Italia while riding with the Cannondale-Drapac team. He won a stage in the 2015 Giro.

Bora-Hansgrohe also confirmed contract extensions for Irish sprinter Sam Bennett, Michael Schwarzmann, Christoph Pfingsten and lead-out rider Rudi Selig. Bora-Hansgrohe has already confirmed the signing of Britain's Pete Kennaugh and Italy's Daniel Oss, who will play a key role helping team leader Peter Sagan in the cobbled Classics.

Cannondale-Drapac is expected to secure Rigoberto Uran as its Tour de France leader for the next three years after securing new sponsorship for the 2018 season,but has lost other riders. Alberto Bettiol has agreed to ride for BMC in 2018, Kristijan Koren has agreed terms with Bahrain-Merida, and Davide Villella has signed for Astana.

"We are proud to welcome Davide in our Bora-Hansgrohe team. He is a talented rider, in Italy people talk of him being the next Ivan Basso. For us he will be an important rider for the Grand Tours but we also think he can play a big role in the Ardennes Classics," team manager Ralph Denk said.

"Already when he was very young he did some impressive results, now it's our turn to help him to take the next step in his career.

"It was also very important to me to extend our relationship with Sam Bennett. With his win in Paris-Nice he proved again to be one of the fastest riders in the peloton, and we think there is still room for improvements. With Rudi Selig we have an important helper in the lead-outs."

"It wasn't an easy decision to leave my old team, I had a great time there and we achieved a lot together. But it is impressive how fast Bora-Hansgrohe develops as a WorldTeam and that appealed to me. Now I am delighted to take on a new challenge with them," Formolo said in a statement from the team.

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