Eddie Dunbar is set to make his Team Sky debut this Saturday at Coppa Agostoni having agreed a deal with the British team until the end of the 2019 season.
The Irishman, 22, was contracted to Aqua Blue Sport for the 2018 season, but – following the closure of the team – Aqua Blue and the UCI granted Dunbar permission to leave his contract early and sign for Team Sky.
Dunbar caught the eye in 2018, finishing an impressive eighth at both the Tour de Yorkshire and Tour de l’Avenir, and he will hope to carry that form into the Italian Classics, in the colours of Team Sky.
“I’m really grateful for the opportunity I’m getting after the situation I’ve found myself in,” Dunbar told TeamSky.com.
“Sometimes a Team folding is the way the sport goes. I just had to be professional about it and understand the situation. Luckily Sky came along and they offered me a block of Italian races which is good preparation for Innsbruck.
“It’s all fallen into place for me – and I can’t wait to get started now.”
Dunbar added: “This is a great opportunity for me to spend the last few weeks of the season with a Team I’ll be riding for next year. It will make the transition a lot easier. It’s really helpful to have this opportunity to familiarise myself with everything, especially the riders and the staff, ahead of next season.”
Team Principal Sir Dave Brailsford welcomed Dunbar’s arrival, commenting: “Eddie is a talented young rider and we’re delighted he’s agreed to join us. Obviously the circumstances, with Aqua Blue folding, aren’t ideal for anyone at the Team, or the sport in general. You never like to see teams go through something like that.”