Slipstream Sports retains Canadian Grand Tour hope Michael Woods on a two-year contract extension

Michael Woods has signed up for another two years with EF Education First-Drapac – the team currently known as Cannondale-Drapac.

The new contract will see the 31-year-old Canadian stay on at the American WorldTour squad for the 2018 and 2019 seasons.

Woods put in an impressive performance at the 2017 Vuelta a España, where he showed his Grand Tour potential with seventh place overall.

Woods’s re-signing gives a significant boost to the EF Education First-Drapac squad, which until early September looked on the brink of disbanding due to lack of sponsorship.

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Woods says that he wanted to stay with the squad, which gave him his first WorldTour contract in the 2016 season.

“The team has put their faith in from the start,” Woods said.

“They were the first team that reached out to me, and they gave me a leadership role in my very first race [2016 Tour Down Under] – which is even harder to wrap my mind around now than it was back then.

“I’m happy to have the opportunity to pay back everyone for the trust and support they showed me during these next two years.”

Jonathan Vaughters, CEO of the team’s owner Slipstream Sports, said that he believes Woods still has unrealised potential in the top races.

“There was no question that we wanted Mike to stay with us,” said Vaughters.

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“We knew he was capable of the performances he put in this year if he was managed and mentored properly, and we think we’re still uncovering the depths of his potential.

“Mike is motivated, bright and open-minded. He’s an asset to our programme.”

Since securing title sponsorship from EF Education First, the team has made a raft of new signings for 2018. Dan McLay, Mitchell Docker, Sacha Modolo and Logan Owen will all debut for the squad next season.