Team Sky announced the completion of its 2018 roster with the signing of 23-year-old Italian neo-pro Leonard Basso.
Basso, no relation to former Giro d’Italia winner Ivan Basso, brings the average age to 27.5, with other young newcomers Egan Bernal, Pavel Sivakov, Kristoffer Halvorsen, and Chris Lawless.
“It’s a dream come true to be joining Team Sky,” Basso said. “My main objective is to help the team wherever I can. I want to learn about the job and what it means to be a pro bike rider. I want to learn as much as I can from my teammates and increase my level day by day.”
Basso previously rode as a trainee for the Trek-Segafredo squad in 2015, taking third at a stage in the USA Pro Challenge from a breakaway.
Directeur sportif Dario Cioni describes Basso as a sprinter “who can survive the punchy climbs and he has the speed to sprint from smaller groups,” and said his signing was based on the results over the past few years.
“We’re happy to see Leonardo turn pro with us next year. He’s got potential and we want to see where we can get to working together,” Cioni said.
With the exit of more experienced riders like Elia Viviani, Danny van Poppel, Peter Kennaugh, Mikel Nieve and Mikel Landa, the team is putting more of a focus on young riders, despite also signing Jonathan Castroviejo, David de la Cruz and Dylan van Baarle.
Team principal Dave Brailsford explained, “We are establishing a group of exceptional young riders at Team Sky. I have no doubt they are going to make a big impact and be an important part of our future.
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