Team Sky announces strong Aviva Tour of Britain team
Posted: Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:10
Team Sky has selected its line-up for the 2015 Aviva Tour of Britain, which passes through Derbyshire on September 11.
The six-man squad includes four British riders and three members of the successful 2015 Tour de France winning team. The full line-up is: Ben Swift, Peter Kennaugh, Ian Stannard, Andrew Fenn, Elia Viviani and Wout Poels.
Team Sky's Ben Swift said: "The Tour of Britain has become one of the stand-out races in the cycling calendar.
"It's a very special feeling to race in front of your home fans and see the fantastic support that we get every year. Cycling has never been more popular in the UK and the crowds at the Tour of Britain get bigger with each edition of the race, which is great to see.
"This will be my seventh appearance at this race and I know just how tough the British roads can be, but we have a strong team and we'll certainly be challenging for stage wins and the overall GC."
Swift won a stage of the 2009 Tour of Britain in Somerset, as well as the King of the Mountains jersey in 2007, and last year wore the Chain Reaction Cycles Points Jersey during the race.
Teammates in the six-rider line-up Wout Poels and Elia Viviani are both previous Aviva Tour of Britain stage winners. Poels won Stage Four to Teignmouth in 2010 while Viviani won the opening stage of the 2013 race at Drumlanrig Castle in Scotland.
The Team Sky squad for the 2015 Aviva Tour of Britain will be:
Andrew Fenn - age 25 - Great Britain
A powerful rider with a penchant for the classics, Fenn is comfortable either as a lead-out man or a sprinter in his own right. The Scot last rode the Aviva Tour of Britain in 2011, finishing an impressive 15th overall, and is looking forward to competing in front of a home crowd at the end of his first year with Team Sky.
Pete Kennaugh - age 26 - Great Britain
The two-time British national champion will proudly campaign his jersey on UK roads just as he did at this year's Tour de France. Now into his sixth season as a pro, Kennaugh has progressed rapidly, playing a key role in both of Chris Froome's Tour victories. The Manxman has also enjoyed success in his own right, this year leading the Criterium du Dauphine after winning the opening stage.
Wout Poels - age 27 - Netherlands
It's been a year to remember for Wout Poels. After joining Team Sky at the start of 2015, the popular Dutchman quickly clocked up a classy solo stage win at Tirreno-Adriatico, before helping Chris Froome to victory at the Tour de France. One of the strongest climbers in the world, Poels was a hero on Alpe d'Huez, and is also a former Tour of Britain stage winner back in 2010.
Ian Stannard - age 28 - Great Britain
The second of the 2015 Tour de France-winning squad in the line-up, Stannard is no stranger to the Tour of Britain having competed in the race on six occasions. Third overall in 2008, the powerful Brit is at home on tough, grippy roads and has unfinished business after crashing out in 2014. A multiple winner of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Stannard's power and determination make him a fan-favourite.
Ben Swift - age 27 - Great Britain
The fourth Brit in the squad is one of the quickest in the peloton and has fond memories of his national Tour. The 2009 Tour of Britain marked the scene of the sprinter's first pro victory into Yeovil and 'Swifty' has not looked back since. Most comfortable sprinting from a select group after a hard finish, expect to see the Yorkshireman mixing it up at the finish of many stages.
Elia Viviani - age 26 - Italy
One of the quickest pure sprinters around, Viviani has enjoyed a successful first season in Team Sky colours and will be hoping to chalk up more stages wins on British soil. The Italian won the race's opening stage in 2013 to spend a day in the yellow jersey and has 32 other pro victories to his name. This year saw him add a long-awaited Grand Tour stage win to his palmares at the Giro d'Italia.
Click here to find out more about the Aviva Tour of Britain through Derbyshire.