After 10 seasons with the Garmin team, Dan Martin leaves to sign a two-year deal with Etixx-Quick-Step

Dan Martin will move from Cannondale-Garmin to Etixx-Quick Step in a two year deal, the Belgian team announced on Friday.

Martin, 29, has been with the Garmin team since joining as a trainee in 2007 and becomes the second long-serving rider to leave the team in the space of a week, with Ryder Hesjedal joining Trek.

With Rigoberto Uran seemingly on his way out at Etixx, CEO Patrick Lefevere was keen to improve his general classification options and Martin certainly fits the bill.

“The arrival of Dan Martin is an important moment for the team,” Lefevere said. “He’s a guy who was able in the past to win one-day races, but also stage races. He has also been a GC contender at grand tours during his career. He is now 29-years-old, so he is at the peak of his career.”

Lefevere sees Martin as a contender for stage races, but also to bolster their Ardennes Classics squad, with the hope that young Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe can learn from the Irishman who won Liege-Bastogne-Liege in 2013.

“I think I am entering an important moment of my career at my age,” Martin said. “I feel I am stronger than ever, mentally and physically. Of course my season will be built around the Ardennes Classics, where I can join forces with Alaphilippe.

“I hope to teach him some things and help him to evolve as a rider, while playing protagonist when I have the opportunity.”

Martin is currently racing with Cannondale-Garmin at the Vuelta a España, where he finished second on Thursday’s stage to Esteban Chaves, having finished fourth on stage two.

Cannondale-Garmin announced the signing of Pierre Rolland on Thursday, who will fill one of the holes left by the departure of Martin and Hesjedal, with manager Jonathan Vaughters likely keen to add more names before the new season.

  • John Senior

    Rolland doesn’t look much of a replacement for Dan Martin – not a great year for Cannondale Garmin which is a pity as JV is a great manager. One stage in the Giro for a team with their profile isn’t really a good season. Here’s hoping they get it together next year.