Team Sky sign Italian national time trial champion Dario Cataldo

Omega Pharma-Quick Step rider won Vuelta stage this month and finished 12th overall in Giro d'Italia for last two years

by Simon_MacMichael   September 26, 2012  

Dario Cataldo wins 2012 Vuelta Stage 16 (copyright Unipublic:Graham Watson

Team Sky have announced that they have signed the Italian national time trial champion Dario Cataldo on a two year contract. In the short term, the signing will bolster Team Sky's strength in depth in supporting the GC ambitions of Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome, but the team says Cataldo himself could also challenge for the overall win in major stage races.

Earlier this month, the 27-year-old won one of the toughest stages of this year's Vuelta, taking stage 16 on the Cuitu Negru after spending most of the day in a break with Vacansoleil-DCM's Thomas de Gendt.

Born in Lanciano in the Abbruzzo region of central Italy, Cataldo showed early promise with an overall victory in the Baby Giro in 2006 and, after joining Liquigas, two stage wins in the Tour de l'Avenir the following year.

He joined Quick Step in 2009, ad has finished 12th overall in each of the past two editions of the Giro d'Italia, and has now ridden in eight Grand Tours.

“I was really excited when the opportunity arose for me to come to Team Sky because it is such a big team, and a big organisation," said Cataldo.

"Everybody knows this is the best team in the world, but there is still so much more they want to achieve.

“This last season has been my best and I’ve been able to achieve all my goals. I put in a good ride at the Giro, I was able to win the Italian time trial championship, a stage at the Vuelta, and then competed at the World Championships.

"I want to build on those performances now and set new goals with Team Sky.

“I can time trial, climb well and also win out of small groups. I am committed to giving my all for this team and will do anything that is asked of me.”

Team Sky Sports Director Sean Yates added: “Dario has repeatedly proven that he can be there on the climbs during tough stage races.

"He has an impressive amount of experience for his age, and moving to Team Sky with a heavy focus on stage racing he will get a lot of support to develop further.

“A rider of his strength has the ability to work for the team leaders, but also has the potential to progress and become a GC contender in his own right,” Yates concluded.

13 user comments

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A good signing by Sky

posted by othello [279 posts]
26th September 2012 - 11:26

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Part of a deal that sends Cav the other way???

posted by RichK [22 posts]
26th September 2012 - 12:52

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Expecting a TTT in 2013 TdF?

C'mon ASO get brave - Mountain TTT! That'll shake things up! Big Grin Devil

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posted by bikeandy61 [386 posts]
26th September 2012 - 13:01

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bikeandy61 wrote:
Expecting a TTT in 2013 TdF?

C'mon ASO get brave - Mountain TTT! That'll shake things up! Big Grin Devil

Well, you say that.. what we do know is that when the race leaves Corsica after the first three stages, it resumes with a team time trial in Nice and certainly once you're off the coast, it's fairly bumpy round there.

I don't see them sending a TTT up the Col d'Eze though, much as I'd love to... having the odd rider drop off the pace in a TTT on a flattish profile is one thing, but if you make the climbs too tough you start getting into course management issues due to the number of riders who'd get tailed off, I imagine.

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posted by Simon_MacMichael [7930 posts]
26th September 2012 - 13:07

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Dont forget the rest of their signings for this season, They are building quite the TT/Mountains team

Joseph Dombrowski
Vasil Kiryienka
David Lopez Garcia
Gabriel Rasch

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posted by Gkam84 [8698 posts]
26th September 2012 - 13:13

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Where does that leave Dowsett?

Ian of Woodford

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posted by winprint [122 posts]
26th September 2012 - 13:19

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Umm! Sky really are shooting at stage race GC but can/will they do anything in the classics with EBH or will he leave?

THE ONLY WAY IS BIKE

posted by lushmiester [156 posts]
26th September 2012 - 13:51

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EBH has just extended for a couple of years. So don't see him leaving any time soon.

Dowsett on the other hand may be offski

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posted by Gkam84 [8698 posts]
26th September 2012 - 14:07

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Team Sky need a clearer policy - Classics, Grand Tours - GC or Stage wins (i.e. mainly Sprints).

They have at least 3 top 10 cyclists in their squad (Cav, Wiggo & Froomey). In the top 30 they have too many to mention. How do you get the best out of the investment? Clearly Cav wants a team dedicated to him like he had at HTC-Highroad, Froomey wants Wiggos spot and many feel he has the edge in the long run. These guys want the world and know they can achieve pretty much whatever they set their minds too so long as they get the support.

Sky want lots of wins and big wins, world recognition wins. IMHO that means, in order of priority; GC in TdF, Giro, Vuelta, Stage wins in all Grand tours,the Classics, GC & Stage wins in the minor Stage races. They cannot have them all. They need to box clever and not spread themselves too thinly as Froomey recently eluded to. Thinking

posted by BigBear63 [69 posts]
26th September 2012 - 15:44

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BigBear. Cav won't be there next season. So that'll clear things up for you Wink

They are mainly focused on grand tour wins. With Wiggo and Froome at the moment. I think come next season. Both will get a team around them to focus on the Giro and Vuelta with them coming together at the TdF Nerd

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posted by Gkam84 [8698 posts]
26th September 2012 - 17:39

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Cataldo is a cracking rider and will be brought on leaps and bounds by Sky.

As for the classics they have EBH, Stannard and Thomas (sadly i dont think he will be GC quality in the GT's)

If you must break the law, do it to seize power: in all other cases observe it. Gaius Julius Caesar.

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posted by stumps [2675 posts]
26th September 2012 - 19:17

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Another excellent signing but you have to wonder, how many of these will think they're good enough to win races and will move on in a couple of years when they realise they're down the pecking order?

With Wiggins (probably only next year), Froome (for 3 or 4 years), Uran, Henao, Cataldo, Porte, Siutsou and in a few years Dombrowski all fighting for the chance to win a grand tour it doesn't take a genius to work out that 5 or 6 into 3 doesn't go. The likes of Porte and Siutsou may be happy just to ride tempo but I can't see all of them sticking around waiting for their chance indefinitely.

On the other hand, all Sky need to do to make me happy is sign Thomas de Gendt, once they do that I'll never criticise them again.

posted by drheaton [3429 posts]
27th September 2012 - 12:06

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Seems pretty clear to me what Team Sky's cunning plan is. GC's are won by climbers who can also time trial. I expect Wiggins to retire next August to start a clothing range with Paul Smith and Team Sky to sign Contador. Then we'll see some real teeth gnashing from Froome's girlfriend! Big Grin

Silly me. You're probably right....

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posted by MercuryOne [1031 posts]
28th September 2012 - 15:42

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