Team Sky have signed Josh Edmondson on a two-year contract after the 20-year-old impressed while riding for the British Cycling Academy at the Tour of Britain.
The Yorkshireman spent two years racing with Team Colpack in Italy before joining the Academy for the eight-stage race, where he shone on the stage to Caerphilly mountain en-route to finishing 16th overall.
Earlier in the season, the climbing specialist registered a top-ten finish in the Giro Ciclistico Della Valle d’Aosta Mont Blanc, a mountainous amateur stage race in Italy, while in 2010 Edmondson finished fourth in the Junior World Championships.
“I’m really excited to be joining Team Sky, and to be taking this next step in my career,” said Edmondson. “It’s an amazing setup and a huge project. Meeting the team you can see that it is one big unit and that the support you get – with the best coaches and nutritionists in the world – is second to none.
“I see myself as a climbing specialist but my main aim with Team Sky is to develop my tour riding and get used to competing alongside the best riders in the world.
“I think the first year is a lot about settling in and learning to be part of the team. I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone and further appreciating how to race at this level.”
Edmondson, who was previously a member of British Cycling’s Olympic Development Programme, joins Team Sky after a stint training with the squad in Majorca.
Team Sky have signed a string of talented young riders ahead of the 2013 season, including American duo Joe Dombrowski and Ian Boswell, and Edmondson boosts the squad’s number of British riders to eight, with Tiernan-Locke also joining, while Mark Cavendish has left for Omega Pharma-QuickStep and Alex Dowsett for Movistar, and Jeremy Hunt has retired.
Team Sky boss Dave Brailsford said: “This is an international team but it’s one with a British heart and we are absolutely committed to nurturing the next generation of British talent.
“We have been keeping an eye on Josh since his time on the Olympic Development Programme and feel he is more than ready to take the next step in his career with a move up to the pro ranks.
“With the coaching and support staff on Team Sky, Josh is in the best possible place to continue his development and we look forward to watching him grow as a rider.”