Team Sky sign promising all-rounder Jhonatan Narvaez from Quick-Step Floors

The former Ecuadorian national champion is leaving the Belgian team after a year

Jhonatan Narvaez has moved to Team Sky from Quick-Step for this season (Photo: Yuzuru SUNADA)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Team Sky have announced the signing of former Ecuadorian champion and promising all-rounder Jhonatan Narvaez.

The 21-year-old joins the British WorldTour team from Quick-Step Floors after his debut season at the top level.

Narvaez is hoping Team Sky will help him develop as a young rider.

He said: “I characterise myself as a bit of an all-rounder and next season one of my goals is to try and develop further so I can be in a position to help the team and also win races.

“I am 21 years old and I know on this team I will have great support to improve myself and grow as a rider.”

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Narvaez won the Ecuadorian national championships in 2017 and finished second in the race this season.

His best results this year were overall victory at the Circuit des Ardennes, second at the Drome Classic and fifth overall at the Tour de Wallonie.

The young rider said: “I’m very excited about this opportunity to join Team Sky and I look forward to working with the team and giving 100 per cent so I can continue to develop as a rider.

“I’ve been racing against the team this season and now I can’t wait to meet up with my new team-mates.

“I know I am going to enjoy being part of the team.

“It is full of big name riders who have achieved a lot and it also has a strong group of Latin American riders.”

Sky signing news for 2019 includes a new five-year deal for young Colombian star Egan Bernal.

The team are also rumoured to be signing another Colombian talent, Ivan Sosa.

These signings come amidst upheaval at Team Sky’s parent company, Sky plc, which has been bought by an American communication giant and seen its chairman depart.

Team Sky coach Xabier Artetxe said of the most recent signing: “Jhonatan is a really versatile rider.

“You could compare him to Jonathan Castroviejo in that they are similar riders that can perform strongly on the flat, time trial really well and, while they are not pure climbers, they can climb very well too.

“This year he put in some really good performances in different scenarios, working on the front for his team-mates and being really competitive on summit finishes.

“We also saw him riding well in some one-day races and the Classics in Belgium.

“He is still really young so as a rider and as a team we need to define in the future where the best place is to go with an exciting rider like Jhonatan.”

Artetxe said: “Next year will be all about learning how we race as a team and how we work in terms of training and recovery.

“I think he is the type of rider that suits stage races more and in the future he can do really well when targeting the GC.

“But for the next year, there’s no pressure for results – for him it’s about being in a good condition to race in these events to continue to learn and develop.”