Jay Vine leaves Alpecin-Deceuninck early to sign for UAE Team Emirates

The 26-year-old had a contract with the Belgian squad until the end of 2023.

by Jonny Long

photography by Getty Images

Jay Vine has left Alpecin-Deceuninck a year before the end of his current contract to join UAE Team Emirates.

The 26-year-old has signed a two-year deal with Tadej Pogačar’s squad after a 2022 that saw him win two stages of the Vuelta a España and claim second overall at both the Tour of Norway and Tour of Turkey.

Vine turned pro with Alpecin-Deceuninck after winning the Zwift Academy and gaining a spot on the Alpecin ProTeam squad for 2021, signing a contract extension in August that year to take him through until the end of the 2023 season. Instead, the Australian moves to one of the top WorldTour squads in what he calls “the next logical step in my career”.

“I’m really excited to be joining UAE Team Emirates . With their strong combination of riders and their GC experience, this was the next logical step in my career,” Vine said in a statement. “I’m really grateful for the opportunities both Alpecin-Deceuninck and the Zwift Academy have given me and how they’ve helped me find my place in the peloton. I’m motivated for the new season with UAE, and eager to further refine my GC ambitions whilst helping the boys kick some goals.”

Alpecin-Deceuninck admitted they would have liked to have kept the climber but agreed to let him leave his contract early.

“Jay Vine still had an agreement with our team until the end of 2023. We would have liked to keep him with us longer, but we respect his wish to leave earlier,” the Belgian team said. “Jay is proof that the way Zwift Academy works, is the right one. But Zwift Academy is also about creating opportunities: if Jay Vine thinks he can develop faster as a GC rider at Team UAE, we don’t want to deprive him of that opportunity, even given his late age to turn pro.”

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