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by Shane Stokes
September 27, 2015
Photography by Cor Vos
On the day that Michal Kwiatkowski will mount the defence of the world road race title he took in Ponferrada in 2014, Team Sky has confirmed that the Polish rider will race with the squad in 2016.
Kwiatkowski is 25 years of age and has emerged as one of the most exciting young talents in the sport. In addition to his worlds title twelve months ago, his career haul also includes this year’s Amstel Gold Race, the 2014 Strade Bianche and Volta ao Algarve events plus a number of other important races.
“Team Sky aim for the highest goals in cycling so I’m very happy that this move has become a reality,” he said. “Sir Dave Brailsford believes in my ability, which gives me great confidence for next season. I know that this team can help me raise my performance levels and win big races.
“The team’s marginal gains philosophy really fits my approach to cycling and I have great respect for what this team has achieved in such a short time. I am excited and motivated to race for Team Sky next year.”
Kwiatkowski’s move to the team has long been on the cards. Links to the British squad emerged months ago, but things have just become official now.
“Michal has performed fantastically well over the past couple of years. We have been following his career a long time,” said Team Principal Brailsford, who confirmed the rider has long been on his wish list.
“We have attempted to sign him on two occasions previously and weren’t going to miss out this time around.
“Team Sky can help him progress and develop both his one-day racing and stage racing. Michal is still young, a great talent for the future, and will keep getting better.”
He showed his stage race potential in 2013 when he finished 11th overall in the Tour de France. He was also runner-up in last year’s Volta al Pais Vasco and Tour of Britain, plus this year’s Paris-Nice.
Kwiatkowski is the sixth in a number of signings unveiled in recent days. Also confirmed are Spanish climber Mikel Landa, who took stages in the Vuelta a España and Giro d’Italia this year plus third overall in the latter, past Giro stage winner Beñat Intxausti, sprinter Danny Van Poppel, Kwiatkowski’s compatriot and current team-mate Michal Golas and the neo pro Gianni Moscon.