Nine of the most exciting pro cycling transfers for 2022

Some of the sports biggest names are on the move at the end of the year

Lotte Kopecky, João Almeida, Grace Brown and Peter Sagan
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The transfer market has been exceptionally busy yet again as teams finalise their rosters for the 2022 season and there are some extremely exciting signings in and amongst.

Some of the biggest names in the sport are on the move in both the men's and women's peloton including Peter Sagan and Lotte Kopecky.

But there are other exciting moves for the 2022 season with riders looking to spread their wings or start up their WorldTour careers.

>>> Richard Carapaz is hoping to form a continental team for 2022

There are so many transfers to choose from, but if you would like to keep up-to-date with all the WorldTour moves then head over to our transfer hub.

Here are just nine riders we have picked out as just some of the most exciting...

Peter Sagan, Bora-Hansgrohe to Team TotalEnergies

Peter Sagan

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You probably won't be surprised to see us starting with the three-time world champion, Peter Sagan.

But lets face it, he is one of the biggest names in the pro peloton even though he has not hit the heights of previous years in 2021 due to illness, injury, and more competition. 

Sagan's move though is very exciting, with French energy giant TotalEnergies wanting to invest heavily into cycling. The Slovakian star is just the first in what is likely to be a plethora of big name signings over the next few years as they strive to get a WorldTour licence.

It is also good for Sagan, while he does take some of his usual entourage with him, he will be also be riding alongside the likes of superbly talented Classics rider Anthony Turgis as well as Edvald Boasson Hagen and Niccolò Bonifazio. Perhaps this is the move that could bring back the old Sagan.

Sam Bennet, Deceuninck - Quick-Step to Bora-Hansgrohe

Sam Bennett

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Predictably, Sam Bennett is the next high-profile transfer on our list. After the protracted saga between Bennett and Deceuninck - Quick-Step boss, Patrick Lefevere, the sprint match-up between the Belgian team and Bennet's new Bora-Hansgrohe team could make this a real battle royale in 2022.

After Bennett pulled out of the Tour de France team with a knee injury, leading to Mark Cavendish being selected for the team and winning four stages, Lefevere started what seemed to be a vendetta against the Irishman.

The last time Bennett completed a race was the Volta ao Algarve in May, returning to race the European Championships, Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen, Gooikse Pijl and the Irish Championships towards the end of the season, but failing to finish in all of them.

But the other interesting side to this story is that Bennett is returning to Bora-Hansgrohe, a team he was seemingly forced out of by a conflict of interests with Pascal Ackermann and Sagan. 

But now, both those riders are leaving, the team looks to be taking on a huge image revamp with 10 new signings coming in for 2022 and seven riders leaving. All the sprint focus will be on Bennett, which is exactly what he would want.

Lotte Kopecky, Liv Racing to SD Worx

Lotte Kopecky

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The Belgian national road race champion and arguably one of the strongest riders in the peloton is joining perhaps the strongest team in the peloton as she joins SD Worx. 

This move is ideal for both rider and team with main Belgian rival, Jolien d'Hoore retiring from the team this year. It also means that Kopecky will have more support in the final of races, something she has lacked at Liv Racing.

Kopecky has shown that if she is in the mix at the finish it will take something special to beat her. With her super-fast sprint as well as immense power on the flat and short hills, she should fit in well with the team.

Not straying far from the top 10 of every race she took part in, Kopecky's worst result of the year was 36th in the mountain time trial in the Giro Donne, but in road races it was 18th place at Strade Bianche.

Put her in with Demi Vollering, Christine Majerus, Chantal van den Broek-Blaak, Kata Blanka Vas, and the rest, she could become close to unbeatable.

Marlen Reusser, Alé-BTC-Ljubljana to SD Worx

Marlen Reusser at the Ladies Tour of Norway 2021

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Sticking with SD Worx and yet another superb signing, this time a rider potentially the perfect replacement for the now-retired former world champion, Anna van der Breggen.

Marlen Reusser has shown over the last few seasons that she is developing into a major talent with 2021 an incredible year for her; six of her 12 professional wins came this year.

Those wins included the European Championships time trial, a stage in the Ceratizit Challenge by La Vuelta, where she finished second overall, as well as both road race and time trial titles of Switzerland.

Reusser may have to accept that she won't be an out-and-out leader just yet in the team with the likes of Vollering now wanting to step up as the main star, but the way they work, especially in the Classics, could suit her racing style perfectly and maybe bring yet more wins.

João Almeida, Deceuninck - Quick-Step to UAE Team Emirates

João Almeida wins stage two of the Tour of Poland

(Image credit: Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images)

João Almeida is quickly becoming yet another new kid on the block for the GC fight in week-long stage races, but also shows a lot of promise in the Grand Tours following his sixth place finish at the Giro d'Italia in 2021. That came despite supporting Remco Evenepoel for most of the race,  backing up his 2020 performance where he finished fourth.

However, Almeida will not be the star leader he may want to be at his new team simply due to the fact he will likely have to support Tadej Pogačar at the Tour de France, as the Slovenian eyes a third consecutive title.

It is very possible that Almeida will get full team support at the Giro or maybe the Vuelta a España from the ever-growing strength of the UAE Team Emirates climbing train.

Almeida opened his winning account in 2021 with the Portuguese time trial title, quickly joined by two stages and the overall at the Tour of Poland as well as a stage and the overall at the Tour of Luxembourg too.  

Grace Brown, Team BikeExchange to FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope

Grace Brown

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Grace Brown has proven herself over the past three years to be a force to be reckoned with. 2021 was her best season so far with two wins at Brugge-de Panne and the opening stage of the Vuelta a Burgos.

But when her move to FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope was announced it was a big surprise as Brown was becoming the figurehead at BikeExchange with the team seemingly forming around her.

But now, she joins the likes of fan favourite Cecile Uttrup Ludwig as well as Marta Cavalli and Emilia Fahlin among other strong riders as they look to take on more wins in 2022.

Brown just missed out on a medal at the Olympic Games in Tokyo with a fourth place in the time trial as well as podiuming at the Tour of Flanders, Nokere Koerse, both road and time trials at the Australian Nationals and fifth at La Course.

Christophe Laporte, Cofidis to Team Jumbo-Visma

Christophe Laporte

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This one may surprise you but. Christophe Laporte is quickly becoming a mega-talent in the Classics, moving away from being just a pure sprinter who can get over a few climbs.

Jumbo-Visma signing him after eight of his nine seasons as a pro with Cofidis shows how he has developed. His sixth place at the hellish Paris-Roubaix last October exemplified his new-found ability. 

Laporte could also be a key component in the Classics for Wout van Aert as he looks to finally take a cobbled Monument such as the Tour of Flanders or Roubaix. 

But the French rider will be hoping to have his own chances too with smaller French and Belgian races seemingly being his meat and drink, taking wins at Etoile de Bessèges, Circuit de Wallonie, and Tour du Limousin. 

Laporte is definitely one to watch in 2022 in the yellow and black of Jumbo-Visma.

Hannah Barnes, Canyon-SRAM to Uno-X Pro Cycling

Hannah Barnes

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Hannah Barnes is one of the biggest names in the British women's scene at the moment, so when it was announced that she will be joining new team Uno-X in 2022 it caused a bit of a stir.

Barnes, whose sister Alice is staying at Canyon-SRAM, is set to be the main leader of the Scandinavian team who have signed two other Brits in multiple Olympic medallist Elinor Barker as well as World Hour Record holder Joss Lowden. Hannah Ludwig is the only other rider who does not come from the Scandinavian nations in the team.

Barnes has had a quieter season in 2021 with her best result a third place on the second stage of the Tour de Suisse behind Marta Bastianelli (Alé-BTC-Ljubljana) and Tereza Neumanova (Women's Cycling Team).

The Brit will be hoping that she can get back to winning ways and add to her list of 12 victories.

Johan Price-Pejtersen, Uno-X Pro Cycling to Bahrain Victorious

Johan Price-Pejtersen

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Johan Price-Pejtersen is looking like he could be the next big thing in time trialling after taking both the World, European and Danish titles in the under 23 class this year.

Price-Pejtersen has also shown he isn't bad at road races either with ninth place in the Danish U23 road race his best result up until now. 

He has likely signed for Bahrain Victorious as a key support rider who can ride on the front of the peloton for hours on end and potentially set up the lead-out train for the likes of European champion Sonny Colbrelli and German Phil Bauhaus.

But he will also be wanting to target as many time trial victories as he can, especially at the biggest races on the WorldTour, going up against the likes of Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers), Rohan Dennis, Wout van Aert (both Jumbo-Visma) and Stefan Küng (Groupama-FDJ).