Coach Rod Ellingworth is to rejoin Ineos Grenadiers, just over a year after leaving the British WorldTour outfit.
Last autumn, one of the most revered coaches of the 21st century left Ineos after 10 years, to steer Bahrain-McLaren’s own ambitious project as team principal.
But after completing just a single season with Bahrain, Ellingworth will be returning to the British super-team, who he had originally been with since its inception in 2010.
Cyclingnews first reported that Ellingworth will join as director of racing, tasked with being in charge of the team’s racing programme, talent identification, development and recruitment.
His new job title echoes similar comments made from Bahrain-McLaren at the weekend when they confirmed Ellingworth’s departure, saying that the Brit wanted the opportunity to focus on rider development once again.
Ellingworth will be joined at the Ineos headquarters by another familiar face, with Dan Hunt returning as director of performance. Hunt was previously a sports director when the outfit were known as Team Sky, but left in 2013 to join the Premier League’s Elite Player Performance Plan. He was credited as a leading figure in British Cycling’s successes at the Beijing and London Olympic Games.
Sir Dave Brailsford, head of Ineos Grenadiers, welcomed the return of his long-time allies and colleagues “I’m very excited about Dan and Rod coming on board to enhance the leadership of the team and build on where we left off last season as a team focused on racing to win with style and flair.”
Despite winning the Giro d’Italia with Tao Geoghegan Hart and winning seven stages in the process, Ineos missed out on their main aim of the condensed 2020 season: securing another Tour de France title.
It is hoped that having Ellingworth and Hunt back in the team, coupled with the signings of Adam Yates, Dani Martinez and the hoped-for improved upturn in fortunes of Egan Bernal and Geraint Thomas, the team can reestablish themselves as the stand-out team in professional cycling, a title they have arguably ceded to a dominant Jumbo-Visma.