Carlos Verona will leave Mitchelton-Scott and join Movistar for next season after signing a two-year deal with the Spanish squad. It will be the first time that Verona has ridden for a Spanish team since turning professional in 2013.
After two seasons with the Burgos2016-Castilla y Leon squad, Verona began his professional career with Omega Pharma-Quick-Step. He spent three years with the Belgian outfit before switching to Mitchelton-Scott midway through the 2016 season. At Mitchelton, Verona carved himself a spot as an important support rider for Simon and Adam Yates and Esteban Chaves. He has also enjoyed some of this on success, winning the mountains classification at this year’s Vuelta al Pais Vasco and the Tour des Fjords as well as a second place at the GP Miguel Indurain in March.
Verona is likely to play a similar role at his new home, with three general classification riders to support in Nairo Quintana, Mikel Landa and Alejandro Valverde. The 25-year-old is the first confirmed signing for Movistar after recently extending the contract of Marc Soler.
Dumoulin donates criterium money to charity
Post-Tour de France criteriums are a lucrative business for riders, with high starting fees going to the top riders. According to local publication Limburger.nl, Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) has decided to use some of his for good by donating the fee he received for riding the Ridderronde in Maastricht on Wednesday.
A Maastricht local, Dumoulin spoke to the crowd ahead of the event and said that the funds would go to Ironman athletes Mathon van Eijsden and Glenn Wijntjens, who have been raising money for research into the muscular disease ataxia. The pair, also from Maastricht, recently completed the Maastricht IronMan to raise money for research into the disease.
Van Eijsden and Wijntjens, who has the disease, did the course together with Van Eijsden towing his friend on an inflatable boat, then rode with him on a cargo bike before pushing him in a wheelchair. The raised some €17,000 for their efforts. It’s not known how much Dumoulin’s start fee was, but it is thought to be around €30,000, according to Limburger.nl.
Debusschere and Demol to Katusha-Alpecin
Jens Debusschere is set to be the latest rider to depart from the Lotto Soudal stable to find new pastures with the Belgian confirming that he’ll ride with Katusha-Alpecin next season. The sprinter also let the cat out of the bag on another move, saying that Trek-Segafredo’s Dirk Demol would be joining him at the team.
Speaking to French website Direct Velo after his victory on the final stage of the Tour de Wallonie last week, Debusschere said that he is looking to focus on the Classics with his new team.
“I leave Lotto Soudal next year, not without difficulty. I join Katusha for two years where I can show myself on the classics of spring. I will train less on the sprint and become more of a classics rider. I will meet Dirk Demol who will join the team as sports director,” he said.
Katusha-Alpecin has not yet announced any signings for the 2019 season, though they have extended with nine riders so far.
Guarnieri extends with Groupama-FDJ
Groupama-FDJ have announced just one new signing for 2019, Stefan Kung, just yet but the French team has been busy securing the services of some of the riders already in their line-up. Jacopo Guarnieri is the seventh rider to extend his contract with the team, adding a further two years to his tenure.
Principally a lead-out rider, Guarnieri joined the team last season after a two-year stint working with Alexander Kristoff at Katusha. He has proved a key fixture in Arnaud Démare’s lead-out train and helped the French sprinter to a stage win at the recent Tour de France.
Démare is among the riders to have signed up for more time at Groupama-FDJ, along with Antoine Duchesne, David Gaudu, Olivier Le Gac, Marc Sarreau and Mathieu Ladagnous.
Beppu renews with Trek-Segafredo
Trek-Segafredo announced that it has extended its contract with Japanese rider Fumiyuki Beppu by two years through 2020.
At 35 years old, he has been with Trek-Segafredo since the team’s conception in 2014 where he has played a key role as a support rider. His contract will also take him through the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games year.
“I’m very grateful that I could renew my contract with Trek-Segafredo until the year of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Those Olympics will be very special for me since they will be held in my home country. Of course, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be one of my big goals,” he said in a team statement.
“It has been 18 years since I left Japan and I have spent half of my life in Europe to race on European soil, so to be able to keep on racing until the 2020 Summer Olympics, that means a lot to me. Over my whole career, I have seen many changes in cycling, but they haven’t changed my passion and belief in this amazing sport. I will continue to give it my all in the two coming years.”
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