Fabio Aru joins UAE Team Emirates on a three-year deal

Italian national champion and 2015 Vuelta a España winner Fabio Aru moves from Astana to UAE Team Emirates for the 2018 season

Fabio Aru at the 2017 Tour de France
(Image credit: Yuzuru Sunada)

Fabio Aru has been signed by UAE Team Emirates on a three-year deal, starting in the 2018 season.

Official news of the move ends months of speculation, confirming that the current Italian national road race champion will leave Astana at the end of 2017.

Aru will join UAE Team Emirates as a Grand Tour leader along with fellow new signing Dan Martin. The 27-year-old has enjoyed solid Grand Tour results since joining Astana in 2012, winning the 2015 Vuelta a España overall after finishing second in the Giro d'Italia earlier that year.

He posted his highest placing at the Tour de France in July 2017, finishing fifth overall behind overall winner Chris Froome (Team Sky), claiming a stage win and wearing the yellow jersey of race leader.

>>> UAE Team Emirates ‘just days away’ from announcing Fabio Aru deal; Dan Martin also likely to join

UAE Team Emirates manager Carlo Saronni said: "We welcome a champion like Fabio Aru; his skills perfectly match the ambitions of the team.

"Besides highlighting Aru’s enormous potential, I’d like to point out that Aru is a rider who can stir up excitement among the fans; he is well-loved because of his generosity on a bike.

"With his performances he will contribute to promoting an ideal team image and he will likely help us reach important competitive milestones."

Watch: Fabio Aru wins Tour de France 2017 stage five

Aru said that he hopes he lives up to the team's expectations.

“I’m honored that the UAE Team Emirates management and their sponsors want to unite our cycling endeavors; I thank them for the faith they’ve placed in me and I hope to live up to their expectations," said Aru.

"I would also like to thank everyone who has been with me up to now in my career, they’ve all been important to my growth."

Aru and Martin join several new signings for WorldTour-level UAE Team Emirates for the 2018 season, which includes Norwegian Tour of Flanders and Milan-San Remo winner Alexander Kristoff.

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Nigel Wynn
Former Associate Editor

Nigel Wynn worked as associate editor on CyclingWeekly.com, he worked almost single-handedly on the Cycling Weekly website in its early days. His passion for cycling, his writing and his creativity, as well as his hard work and dedication, were the original driving force behind the website’s success. Without him, CyclingWeekly.com would certainly not exist on the size and scale that it enjoys today. Nigel sadly passed away, following a brave battle with a cancer-related illness, in 2018. He was a highly valued colleague, and more importantly, an exceptional person to work with - his presence is sorely missed.