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Teams & Riders Transfers and Rumours 2019 > 2020

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I could see that one coming when Jumbo had announced extension with Kuss but not with him.

He was already rumoured to Cannondale for 2018 in 2017 but I guess that didn't work out because of sponsorship problems the team had back then.
 
They'll have to sign some very strong riders to escape mediocrity.
They could end up having something like Dan Martin for GTs and the Ardennes with support from riders like Hermans, Navarro, Spilak, Plaza and Boswell.

Then potentially one seriously good leadout train with Zabel, Haller, Cimolai, Dempster and others.

For classics/rouleurs they could have Pollitt, Debusschere, Brandle, Dowsett, Hollenstein, Dunne, Biovin etc.

I see a potentially very strong squad. They should throw the chequebook at Sam Bennett for the bunch sprints, and they really could have a nice squad.
 
May 30, 2016
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Bear in mind, I'm looking at "best case scenario" for the lad.

Dunbar (23) is a year and a half younger than Tao (24), 4 months older than Bernal, and less than a year older than Sivakov (both 22). It's way too early to define the ceiling for any of them. And even if Dunbar has signed his 3 year deal with a view to being a domestique for Bernal/Carapaz/Thomas for most of that time, he should still get leadership opportunities at classics etc (he won the u23 Ronde, after all).

My point being, as the Froome/Thomas/Poels/Kwiatkowski/Rowe generation of Ineos rider ages out, there will be more World Tour races coming about where one of the 24-and-under group will get to wear a number ending in 1. I just hope that if/when Dunbar gets that chance at a Grand Tou, he gets better support than Tao is getting at the current Vuelta.
Tao is way outta the league that people put him in.
 
They could end up having something like Dan Martin for GTs and the Ardennes with support from riders like Hermans, Navarro, Spilak, Plaza and Boswell.

Then potentially one seriously good leadout train with Zabel, Haller, Cimolai, Dempster and others.

For classics/rouleurs they could have Pollitt, Debusschere, Brandle, Dowsett, Hollenstein, Dunne, Biovin etc.

I see a potentially very strong squad. They should throw the chequebook at Sam Bennett for the bunch sprints, and they really could have a nice squad.
I see not a single superstar or big winner. Dan Martin doesn't cut it. Seems they'll score many placings but very few wins, just like both teams seperately this year. I.e. mediocrity.
 
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You're not alone in that opinion. For some reason the British cycling media seems to think that he's Merckx MkII.

Knox looks to be the far better rider but gets a fraction of the focus.
I think the thing is that Tao was picked up earlier and had stronger results at 20-21, largely in the notoriously difficult-to-rate US scene admittedly at first, due to his time with Hagens Berman. Those races are always tough to judge because they're out of the way for the European-based péloton and oftentimes therefore come at a point in the form cycle which varies wildly, so Tao was producing some very competitive rides against some big names, but what form those big names had is variable. Obviously he also had some strong performances in U23 and espoir races in Europe, but the North American races meant there was a more visible body of work for Tao before turning pro than Knox had. Remember Tao has also been 2nd in the Tour of the Alpes and 5th in the Tour de Pologne this year. Knox had fewer results prior to turning pro, sure, but going to Deceuninck is a very different proposition to going to Ineos. Tao will be learning in a very disciplined, ranked environment where he will only get freedom to race for himself in select races, whereas DQS are a largely stage-wins and one-day-racing based organisation and, especially with their main stage racer (look, before July, nobody thought Alaphilippe was a GC leader) leaving at the end of the season, Knox has nobody who is going to stand in front of him in the queue for freedom in this kind of race.

I also wonder if Knox might be more of a Steven Kruijswijk; there were a lot of Dutch supertalents coming through at his time, with Gesink particularly notable with his almost podiuming the Vuelta and so on, and Mollema also. But the one that then nearly won a GT was Kruijswijk, who hadn't looked especially standout as an espoir - however what his big strength was was his recovery; most espoir races are short stage races so he hadn't been able to showcase this strength until already a pro. If you look at Knox's Vuelta, even taking the breakaway in the Cubilla stage out of it, he was around the 30-40 position in the first week mountain stages and around the 10-20 mark in the later ones.

Time will tell if this is an anomaly - remember, Phil Deignan got a 17 minute bonus in the Ávila stage in week 3 and finished 9th in the 2009 Vuelta, which similarly to this one had a very strong top 6 or so, then some domestiques and coattail-hangers, but he was 26 then, rather than 23 like Knox is.
 
Jul 19, 2017
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Quinten Hermans and Corne van Kessel to Wanty for 3 years.
Few months ago their manager said that Hermans is only available in package with his buddy, looks like he wasn't kidding.
They will keep riding cyclocross for new Wanty team called Tormans CX.
 
I see not a single superstar or big winner. Dan Martin doesn't cut it. Seems they'll score many placings but very few wins, just like both teams seperately this year. I.e. mediocrity.
Well, if they retain the best of both squads it's an improvement on where they were.

With the riders they will have it would be an attractive option for a very top rider or two. Take the lead out guys available and put someone like Bennett on the end and there's potential for quite a few sprint wins.

If Dan Martin is indeed no longer riding GTs for General then the amalgamated team will be able to offer a strong team of climbing domestiques and no leadership qualms. Trying to lure across a rider like Marc Soler or George Bennett would be a good idea.

As for the classics, Pollitt is developing nicely.
 
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