Team Sky sign Diego Rosa and Kenny Elissonde for 2017
By Paul Vinnell
Last Updated: 27/10/16 7:57pm
Team Sky have signed Italian rider Diego Rosa and French star Kenny Elissonde for the 2017 season.
Rosa has penned a three-year deal, while Elissonde is joining for two years. Both men are renowned climbers.
Rosa, 27, who had been with Astana, stood out this year by winning a stage on the Tour of the Basque Country and also came second in Il Lombardia.
Rated as "one of the best climbers" in the peloton by Team Sky chief Sir Dave Brailsford, Rosa looks set for a supporting role to the team's lead rider, Chris Froome, at next year's Tour de France.
Rosa said: "Joining Team Sky is a dream come true and I'm very excited to pull on the jersey.
"It's a big step forward in my cycling career and I'm sure Team Sky is the best environment for me to grow and mature as a rider.
"My ambitions are in line with those of the team: to work hard together to achieve important results. I'm ready to support the team's leaders in Grand Tours and do well in the one-day races that suit my skill set."
Elissonde joins from French team FDJ and will boost the team's Grand Tour roster.
He comes with some pedigree, having won a stage of the 2013 Vuelta a Espana. This year he finished second on the Vuelta's queen stage and just missed out on the 'King of the Mountains' jersey.
Elissonde said: "It's well known that Team Sky is one of the best teams in the world for climbers. I will learn a lot from all the staff and it's really exciting to be with the team. It's a big step in my career."
Rosa and Elissonde are Team Sky's fourth and fifth signings for the 2017 season, joining Owain Doull, Tao Geoghegan Hart and Lukasz Wisniowski.