Prioritising life at home, Australian Chloe Hosking announced today that she is leaving Wiggle High5 and will ride for Italian-registered Alé Cipollini Galassia for the 2017 season. Her new arrangement will allow the 25-year-old Ella contributor to race only two dedicated blocks in Europe, while spending most of the year training in her native Australia.
Hosking — who’s had perhaps her biggest career results this season with wins in Tour of Qatar, at the Giro Rosa, Tour of Chongming Island, La Route de France and at La Course, is also newly engaged and enrolled in a law degree program. Riding for Alé Cipollini Galassia will allow her to focus on both her race career and life outside of cycling.
“I think I really came into my own as a rider at Wiggle alongside some fantastic teammates,” Hosking said. “I’m grateful to have been part of so many of the team’s victories these last two years, including some of my own … but in 2017 I’m seeking out more of what’s made this year so successful in the first place. I’ve always found that when I’m in a happy head space that I ride a lot better, and I get in a happy head space from spending time with my family and my partner.”
“I made the decision that I wanted a more flexible work environment that would give me really concentrated periods of racing in Europe and then allow me to train in Australia,” explained Hosking. “I realise it’s unorthodox and that not every team would be open to offering this sort of arrangement. I’m really excited that Alé Cipollini Galassia can and is willing to allow me try it and see how it works.”
Team manager Fortunato Lacquaniti said they’re welcoming Hosking with open arms.
“We worked with Chloe on her race program, like we do with our other athletes. We believe this sort of planning allows us to reach our objectives as a team,” said Lacquaniti. “We strongly pursued Chloe for Alé Cipollini Galassia. We have put in a lot of effort to create a strong and stable team. With the arrival of Chloe, the team has two great leaders in Chloe and Marta Bastianelli.”
The agreed-upon blocks of racing in 2017 will see Hosking kick off her season in the Middle East in February before going to Europe four weeks later for the women’s European season opener, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and returning to Australia after Grand Prix de Dottignies.
“That’s only six weeks of racing in the spring. In the past, I’ve had to hold form all the way through until China, so I think it could work really well for me where I only have to be on form for a smaller period,” said Hosking. “Hopefully that will translate into better results in the spring next year.”
From there it’s a quick trip to China followed by a longer trip to Europe that begins with Aviva Women’s Tour and ends with Madrid Challenge. Having recorded wins at both Giro Rosa and La Course this year, she expects to return to both races with Alé Cipollini Galassia next summer.
“That’s a much longer block, but I may end up going home between Sweden and Holland,” Hosking said. “Essentially, next year is a fusion between enjoying riding my bike and enjoying my family.”
But first, Hosking has her sight set on the UCI World Championships in Qatar, where she will be lining up among the race favourites. Hosking has had a lot of success in the Middle East since starting her pro career in 2010, having won the Tour of Qatar twice.
“Hopefully I’m returning with rainbow stripes,” she said with a laugh.