Teams & Riders The Great Big Transfers and Rumours Thread

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Groves leaving for Alpecin is a bit of a surprise to me, even with Merlier leaving he won't get more chances to ride for himself. They'll probably send him to the Giro, but it's not like he's going to a team that will make him their clear cut nr. 1 Sprinter...
It's even more surprising after he crashed so many times in his first two years at BEX who showed faith in offering him a one year deal in 2022, when there was no other interest from the WT - Apparently a few teams were interested in Groves for 2023 and the dollars were good - In terms of opportunities at Alpecin it will similar to BEX ( and he lead most races at BEX in 2022 ) - The only benefit at Alpecin will be he will ride more one-day races and possibly classics.
 
Fair enough, but no idea what happened to him. In the u23 ranks his recovery was his biggest strength. He never was the strongest, but he never had bad days in the big Italian stage races (Baby Giro and Valle d'Aosta).
yeah I don't know either. I do think he can do better in another team, even if Lotto wanted to keep him, he should leave, but there's just no way Lotto keeps him. He was also a Soudal transfer and they are leaving anyways.
 
Merlier to Quickstep, just confirmed by Roodhoofdt on Sporza interview
This is still quite a weird signing. QS are obviously a great team to sprint for, but they don‘t pay big bucks for their sprinters and they have Jakobsen in place as number one guy. Where does Merlier fit in? Is the expectation that the two will be competing to be the guy on the lead sprinter’s race programme?
 
This is still quite a weird signing. QS are obviously a great team to sprint for, but they don‘t pay big bucks for their sprinters and they have Jakobsen in place as number one guy. Where does Merlier fit in? Is the expectation that the two will be competing to be the guy on the lead sprinter’s race programme?
Merlier has never finished a GT until now, so he's probably fine riding the Giro next year and IMO he has more potential as a one day racer.
 
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Merlier has never finished a GT until now, so he's probably fine riding the Giro next year and IMO he has more potential as a one day racer.
He will be 30 by the start of next season. It seems a bit odd to still be talking in terms of potential or being fine with not riding the Tour etc. He’s a top sprinter now. I could understand him taking big money from a megarich team to ride a programme that is subordinate to their GC ambitions. Careers are short and retirements are long and expensive. But taking Quickstep money to ride a programme that is likely subordinate to that of another sprinter seems... strange,
 
He will be 30 by the start of next season. It seems a bit odd to still be talking in terms of potential or being fine with not riding the Tour etc. He’s a top sprinter now. I could understand him taking big money from a megarich team to ride a programme that is subordinate to their GC ambitions. Careers are short and retirements are long and expensive. But taking Quickstep money to ride a programme that is likely subordinate to that of another sprinter seems... strange,
Maybe he's perfectly fine with riding the classics & Giro d'Italia. He's 30 like you said. No need to chase dreams at the Tour de France and fail. Some years ago even this was a dream. It has come true. It's already good enough. Maybe he's content with the Giro d'Italia and wants the next 3 years to be as fruitful as possible, rather than going to France at all costs.
 
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Movistar has extended Enric Mas for 3 more years through the 2025 season.

The Movistar Team’s biggest reference for the Grand Tours over the last few years will continue wearing the Blue jersey beyond 2022. The organisation managed by Eusebio Unzué will continue to trust in the talents of Enric Mas (Artà, Mallorca, ESP; 1995), who has re-signed for an additional three years -until the end of the 2025 season- with the Telefónica-backed squad, to lead the hopes of the longest-standing team in the WorldTour peloton.
 
Maybe he's perfectly fine with riding the classics & Giro d'Italia. He's 30 like you said. No need to chase dreams at the Tour de France and fail. Some years ago even this was a dream. It has come true. It's already good enough. Maybe he's content with the Giro d'Italia and wants the next 3 years to be as fruitful as possible, rather than going to France at all costs.
Sure, maybe so, but if I was an agent and had a client like that, I’d want him contentedly riding the Giro and the rest of the number 2 sprinter programme for a team that will pay him twice what QS will. I’d only want him to sign for QS on the basis that he was going there to win as many big races as possible on the end of the main QS train and then cash in with a contract elsewhere on the basis of those wins.
 
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Sure, maybe so, but if I was an agent and had a client like that, I’d want him contentedly riding the Giro and the rest of the number 2 sprinter programme for a team that will pay him twice what QS will. I’d only want him to sign for QS on the basis that he was going there to win as many big races as possible on the end of the main QS train and then cash in with a contract elsewhere on the basis of those wins.
Yeah, but there's always the case of Coquard who refused to ride schedule II at Quick Step and then Viviani became a big sprint gun instead of him.
 
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Yeah, but there's always the case of Coquard who refused to ride schedule II at Quick Step and then Viviani became a big sprint gun instead of him.
The positive thing about Quickstep is that they won't hesitate to promote you to their nr. 1 sprinter, so if you are confident in your ability it's a risk worth taking. With their train and the Quickstep effect you also have the potential to cash out with a really big contract 2 years later and Merlier would still be on the younger side for Israel retirement home...
 
Look who's staying for another two years!

De Gendt is one of my favourite cyclists, so I am pleased to see he is renewing for 2 more years. I had read that he was discouraged by his results in 2021, when he hinted this year might be his last.

We need more like him in the bunch: not afraid to lose and not afraid to win (with apologies to Nibali).
 
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According to Het Nieuwsblad:
  • Steff Cras to Totalenergies. Bit of a weird transfer to me but ok. Will get the same freedom as he got at Lotto, more money and maybe a guaranteed Tour selection?
  • Arjen Lyvyns to Lotto-Dstny, was a matter of time for him to get a WT offer, good dom, nothing more tho
Gazetta:
  • Pasqualon to Bahrain. Big contract on his old day I guess?
L'Equipe
  • Champoussin to Arkea. That's an important transfer for Arkea to be competitive enough for the WT
 
Bakelants did confirm on "Vive le Vélo" that Pasqualon wasn't staying.
According to Het Nieuwsblad:
  • Steff Cras to Totalenergies. Bit of a weird transfer to me but ok. Will get the same freedom as he got at Lotto, more money and maybe a guaranteed Tour selection?
  • Arjen Lyvyns to Lotto-Dstny, was a matter of time for him to get a WT offer, good dom, nothing more tho
Gazetta:
  • Pasqualon to Bahrain. Big contract on his old day I guess?
L'Equipe
  • Champoussin to Arkea. That's an important transfer for Arkea to be competitive enough for the WT
 
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