British rider Lizzy Banks has been announced as the first signing of the newly named EF Education-Tibco-SVB for the 2022 season.
Banks, who joins the team after one year at Ceratizit-WNT, has had a far tougher season than her previous two with the 31-year-old managing to ride just two races. After the second though, Strade Bianche, it was discovered she had a serious concussion and needed time off the bike.
The Brit from Sheffield is joining EF Education-Tibco-SVB on a two-year deal with Banks happy to be joining an American team again after going pro with UnitedHealthCare in 2018.
"Having started my career on an American team in 2018 with Rachel Hedderman as sports director, this move almost feels like I'm coming home," she said.
"Primarily, I'm just so looking forward to racing my bike again and experiencing the rush of emotions that comes with it and that sensation of pushing harder and going deeper than you ever realised was possible."
She has two wins to her name, but they are both of the highest class coming at the Giro Donne in 2019 and 2020. She also took a superb second place at the GP Plouay behind fellow Yorkshirewoman Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo).
Banks is hoping to get back to those heights: "After a challenging year in 2021 overcoming a difficult concussion injury, there is so much to look forward to in 2022.
"EF Education-Tibco-SVB are making a huge step up next year, and it's massively exciting to come on board at this moment in the team's history and during such a pivotal era for women's cycling."
The team have applied to become part of the UCI Women's WorldTour in 2022, as men's WorldTour team sponsor EF Education First boost funding along with bringing on board new sponsors as well.
Founder of the team, Linda Jackson, said that they first approached Banks in 2018 when UnitedHealthCare announced they would be folding.
"We first made contact in 2018, as UnitedHealthcare was winding down," Jackson said.
"I wasn't quick enough to sign her to the team then, so we are just delighted to have this opportunity now. Lizzy is an incredibly talented rider, Rachel knows her well, and she is a wonderful personality to have on the team. She'll be a tremendous leader for our development riders, and I expect to see good results from her as she puts her concussion further behind her."
"Before her crash at Strade Bianche, Lizzie was proving herself to be one of the rising stars of the women's peloton, and, now that she has recovered, I'm excited to see her continue to make her mark."
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