Peiper is expected to work closely with Dan Martin as he targets the Ardennes Classics and Grand Tours, sharing his experience of working with Cadel Evans and Richie Porte. UAE Team Emirates have also bolstered its line-up by signing Fernando Gaviria from Quick-Step Floors, Sergio Henao from Team Sky and several talented young riders. The team also has Alexander Kristoff for the sprints and cobbled Classics, and hope that Fabio Aru can get his career back on track in 2019.
Peiper was looking for a new direction in his long career in professional cycling after BMC Racing announced it was merging with CCC for 2019.
According to Ride Media in Australia, Peiper spoke to several teams but opted for UAE Team Emirates and is already at the team base in Italy for planning meetings for the new season. French directeur sportif Philippe Mauduit recently left UAE Team Emirates to work with Groupama-FDJ. UAE Team Emirates confirmed to Cyclingnews that Peiper had joined the team staff for 2019.
"UAE has ticked all the boxes. It’s a very professional outfit and a great environment for riders to develop. I’m excited about the prospect of working with a rider like Dan Martin who has become a genuine GC contender in recent years," Peiper told Ride Media.
Peiper moved to Belgium as a 16-year-old to find a professional contract, going on to race for Peugeot, Panasonic and Tulip Computers. He won stages at both the Giro d’Italia and Tour de France. After time away from the sport he returned as a directeur sportif at Davitamon and then more successfully with the High Road set-up that included Mark Cavendish.
Peiper has worked for BMC Racing for the last six years despite having health concerns, primarily as a result of bowel cancer, which he was diagnosed with several years ago.
"I think it’s something you just take in your stride after a while," he told Ride Media in an interview after this year’s Tour de France. "Your resilience to deal with problems and handle them at the same time as you’re dealing with other life just becomes bigger.
"I’m as passionate about cycling now as I’ve ever been and I still believe I’ve got a lot to contribute."