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Team Sky sign Irish cyclist Deignan

Team Sky confirm Philp Deignan’s recruitment for the 2014 season

Irish rider Philip Deignan will return to the top level of professional cycling next year after landing a contract to ride for Team Sky.

Team Sky, who are sponsored by the popular broadband and digital TV provider Sky, were clearly delighted with their latest addition to the team.

“Everyone at Team Sky is very excited to have Philip join us from the start of next season,” said team principal Sir David Brailsford.

“We’re well aware of what he is capable of on a bike. He’s a climber of real quality and he will certainly strengthen our squad even further in stage race competition.”

Top tier experience

30-year-old Deignan has spent the past two years riding mostly in North America for the United Healthcare team.

This season has seen him hit a rich vein of form, securing the overall victory in the Tour of the Gila and top ten finishes in the Tour of California, Tour of Utah and the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado.

However, Deignan has also tasted competition at the highest level of the sport, competing in six Grand Tours between 2007 and 2011.

His biggest career achievement to date came in 2009 when he won a stage of the Vuelta a España and finished the three-week race in 9th place overall.

At home in the mountains

Deignan, originally from County Donegal, will become the first Irishman to compete for Team Sky and will likely take the role of a mountain domestique.

The British professional road racing team are currently ranked number one in the world, having won the Tour de France for the past two years with Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome.

Known for their analytical approach to training and race preparation, Team Sky are confident they can help Deignan achieve his full potential.

“I’m certain that under our coaches and performance staff there is a lot more to come from Philip,” added Brailsford.

Prior to donning the black and blue kit of Team Sky in 2014, Deignan will continue to represent United Healthcare for the remainder of the cycling season.

His next scheduled race is the Tour of Britain, which runs from the 15th to the 22nd of September.

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