Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome will leave Team Ineos for Israel Start-Up Nation at the end of the season after they decided against renewing his contract.
Froome has spent 10 years cycling for Sir Dave Brailsford’s outfit – previously Team Sky – but he will join Israel Start-Up Nation on an undisclosed deal and remain there until the end of his career.
“I’m really excited to be joining the ISN family,” Froome said. “I look forward to challenging and being challenged by their talent and continuing to strive for the success that I’ve enjoyed up to now.”
“ISN’s impact on the sport is rapidly expanding, and I’m energised to be along for the ride. I feel we can achieve great things together.”
Britain’s most successful cyclist will target a record-equalling fifth Tour crown with Team Ineos at the rearranged 2020 edition, due to run from August 29 to September 20.
“It has been a phenomenal decade with the Team, we have achieved so much together and I will always treasure the memories,” Froome said.
“I look forward to exciting new challenges as I move into the next phase of my career but in the meantime my focus is on winning a fifth Tour de France with Team INEOS.”
“I feel we can achieve great things together.”
Chris Froome on move to Israel Start-Up Nation
The 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017 Tour de France winner has seen his leadership role challenged by both Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal, who have won the past two editions of the Tour.
Israel Start-Up Nation co-owner Sylvan Adams, an Israeli-Canadian property developer, said in a statement on Facebook: “Chris is the best rider of his generation and will lead our Tour de France and Grand Tour squad.
“We hope to make history together as Chris pursues further Tour de France and Grand Tour victories, achievements that would make a serious case for Chris to be considered the greatest cyclist of all time.”
The 35-year-old has recovered from career-threatening injuries suffered in a high-speed crash on a course recon at the Criterium du Dauphine last summer, ruling him out of that year’s Tour.
Ineos general manager Brailsford described Froome as a “great champion” and said they had “shared many memorable moments over the years but I do believe this is the right decision for the Team and for Chris”.
“Given his achievements in the sport, Chris is understandably keen to have sole team leadership in the next chapter of his career – which is not something we are able to guarantee him at this point”
Sir Dave Brailsford on decision to not renew Frooome’s deal
Brailsford added: “Given his achievements in the sport, Chris is understandably keen to have sole team leadership in the next chapter of his career – which is not something we are able to guarantee him at this point. A move away from Team INEOS can give him that certainty.
“At the same time, it will also give other members of our Team the leadership opportunities they too have earned and are rightly seeking.
“I am excited about the talent we have right across the Team at the current time and all our collective focus is on preparing for the season ahead.”
Kenya-born Froome, who is also a two-time Vuelta a Espana winner and also won the 2018 Giro d’Italia, is one Tour de France victory away from the record held by Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain.