Stickybottle

Team Sky’s Henao to join Dan Martin, Fabio Aru at UAE Emirates

Posted on: September 15th, 2018

Sergio Henao, a winner of Paris Nice and many other top races, has said he is joining UAE Team Emirates next year where he would join Ireland’s Dan Martin and Fabio Aru.

 

Team Sky’s Sergio Henao set to join UAE Team Emirates

 

Sergio Henao is set to join UAE Team Emirates alongside Dan Martin and Fabio Aru. Though Henao has been a super domestique with Team Sky, he has also won big races.

Henao stayed racing in Colombia until he was 24 years. And he has been with Team Sky since 2012; now at the end of his seventh season with the squad.

He has confirmed his departure of Team Sky for UAE Team Emirates in an interview with the Colombian news channel Noticias Caracol.

“This is my last year with Sky, I signed with UAE Emirates,” he told his home channel from the Vuelta.

“I’m grateful to the team for everything they brought me. I’m a little nostalgic because I leave great friends and people of value.”

Henao was pulled from racing twice after questions emerged over his biological passport. However, he returned to competition without any sanction having been cleared.

At 30 years old, he is two years older than Aru and two years younger than Dan Martin.

On the face of it, his joining UAE Team Emirates will leave it a little top heavy with potential team leaders.

Sergio Henao has won Paris-Nice, just last year, and finished in the top three overall three times at Tour of the Basque Country.

He has won two stages apiece in Vuelta al Pais Vasco and Tour of Poland. And he has been Colombian national champion twice.

However, in reality this looks like a great signing from Dan Martin’s perspective; especially for the Ardennes Classics.

 

It is not yet confirmed by the team, but according Sergio Henao he will be in the same team as Dan Martin, top, and Fabio Aru, middle, next year. And that seems like great news from Martin’s perspective.

 

Dan Martin has tended to make those Ardennes classics and the Tour de France his key objectives for the season.

He was 8th overall at the Tour de France this year. He won the sixth stage atop the Mûr de Bretagne with an attack of over 1km up the steep climb that nobody could live with.

While he did not perform well in the early season, he will again be expected to target the Ardennes Classics next year.

Martin won Liège–Bastogne–Liège in 2013 and has also been 2nd and 5th in that race. He was set to win the 2014 edition when he crashed on the final corner.

And in La Flèche Wallonne he has been 2nd twice, 3rd, 4th and 5th. And the Mur du Huy is a climb that suits him perfectly.

Sergio Henao has ridden well in those races, but not as well as Dan Martin. He’s been 2nd, 4th and 7th in La Flèche Wallonne. And in Liège–Bastogne–Liège he has finished 7th, 9th, 13th and 16th.

Those are not results, when set against Martin’s, that will see him lead UAE Team Emirates in those races.

But they are performances that show he can be a huge asset to Martin deep into those two classics.

And in the Grand Tours Sergio Henao has been 9th, 16th and 13th in the Giro. He has also been 12th and 28th in the Tour.

Furthermore, he has placed 14th, 28th and 22nd in the Vuelta, where he currently sits 25th overall.

His Grand Tour results have, of course, been achieved when riding for Chris Froome, Bradley Wiggins and Geraint Thomas. And  he may do better outside Team Sky.

But he is still behind Aru’s and Martin’s results in the Grand Tours. And that means he will almost certainly ride for them in the three-week races.

His signing for UAE Team Emirates has not been confirmed by the team; though Sergio Henao has said himself it is happening.

 

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