August marks the start of cycling’s transfer season, with big name moves confirmed throughout the month ahead of riders officially swapping teams in January 2019. Already we've seen moves announced for the likes of Tejay van Garderen, Caleb Ewan and Andre Greipel.
Riders can only officially sign for other teams from August 1, though talks will have been ongoing behind the scenes for some time.
And there are already plenty of big names set for pastures new in 2019, with BMC Racing’s merger with CCC meaning several of the Swiss team’s former riders top the list of confirmed transfers.
Former Tour de France white jersey winner van Garderen is off to Team EF-Drapac, while Rohan Dennis will ride for Bahrain-Merida next season and Richie Porte is set for Trek-Segafredo.
As with every transfer window, the sprinters merry-go-round has got moving, too; 11-time Tour de France stage winner Greipel will join Fortuneo-Samsic, with Ewan – angered by his Tour de France omission – off to Lotto-Soudal to replace him.
The cycling rumour mill will heat up from now until the end of the season, too, with those soon to be out of contract linked with high-profile moves.
For this year, that includes Tour de France champion Thomas was one of those, but he put paid to any speculation when he agreed a new three-year contract with Team Sky.
Struggling to keep abreast of the latest transfer news? We’ve rounded up the biggest confirmed deals so far, and will continue to update this article as more moves are announced.
Biggest confirmed cycling transfers for 2019
Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing to EF-Drapac)
Once upon a time, Tejay van Garderen was one of the hottest properties in pro cycling. The American finished fifth at the 2012 Tour de France to win the white jersey and repeated the same overall finish two years later.
In 2015, he was third overall at the Tour de France when he was forced to quit the race on stage 17 but has fallen out of favour since – playing second fiddle to Richie Porte at the Tour and being unable to seize his own chance in other races.
A Giro stage win is the best can Garderen has to his name and so, with BMC Racing set to merge with CCC Sprandi Polkowice, the 29-year-old, reaching a critical point in his career, has decided on a fresh start.
Rigoberto Uran’s career was revived by a move to Slipstream Sports (officially Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale) and TVG will be hoping his own move sparks a similar revival.
Pierre Rolland (EF-Drapac to Vital Concept)
Making way for van Garderen is fellow former Tour de France white jersey winner Pierre Rolland, who will end a three-year stay with Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale.
Rolland’s biggest result in that time was a stage win at the 100th Giro d’Italia in 2017, while he was an integral part of Uran’s team when the Colombian rode to second overall at the Tour later that summer.
However, Rolland's destination may come as a surprise to some – stepping down a division to join Vital Concept, who were overlooked for a Tour de France wildcard this year.
Rolland will lead the team in the mountains, continuing to hunt for stage wins at the Tour if they are handed a wildcard, which is more likely with a French rider of Rolland's calibre in their ranks, while Bryan Coquard leads the team's sprinting ambitions.
Caleb Ewan (Mitchelton-Scott to Lotto-Soudal)
The writing was on the wall for Caleb Ewan’s relationship with Mitchelton-Scott went as soon as the team opted to omit the rising sprint star from their Tour de France line-up.
Ewan was set to make his Tour debut, but Mitchelton-Scott decided to put all their eggs in the Adam Yates basket and back the young Brit’s GC bid – a plan which backfired when Yates struggled in the Alps.
Ewan, 24, will now look to add to his 28 career wins with Lotto-Soudal instead, filling the void left by Andre Greipel’s departure from the Belgian outfit.
He will likely make his Lotto-Soudal debut at his home tour, the Tour Down Under, where both he and Greipel have enjoyed plenty of sprinting success.
With Ewan making the move, two of his former lead-out men – Roger Kluge and Luka Mezgec – are rumoured to be heading to the Belgian team, too.
Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal to Fortuneo-Samsic)
Andre Greipel turned 36 during the Tour de France, but that has not deterred Fortuneo-Samsic from signing the 11-time Tour de France stage winner on a two-year contract.
The big German sprinter has claimed 93 of his 153 professional victories during his eight-year spell with Lotto-Sodual (and its former guises) and established himself as one of the peloton’s finest sprinters.
A 22-time Grand Tour stage winner in all, Greipel was understudy to Mark Cavendish at HTC-Colombia before his move but has not looked back since being backed to lead his own sprint team.
At 36, however, he will now step down to UCI ProContinental level where he will lead the sprinting charge in tandem with Warren Barguil’s bid for glory in the mountains. The team will need a wildcard to compete at the Tour de France, but that looks very likely with Barguil and Greipel on the books.
Greipel will be without his former lead-out man Marcel Sieberg, however – his fellow German has also moved on, but will now ride for Bahrain-Merida.
Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing to Bahrain-Merida)
Part of the big BMC Racing clear-out – in anticipation of the team’s merger with CCC Sprandi Polkowice – has seen a clutch of riders make the move to Bahrain-Merida.
Australian time trial ace Rohan Dennis is one of those, with the 28-year-old – a stage winner at both the Giro d’Italia and Tour de France – leaving after four years with the Swiss team.
As well as those Grand Tour stage wins, Dennis has also won the Tour Down Under and USA Pro Challenge overall, and will bolster Bahrain-Merida’s team for week-long races as well as time trials.
Climber Damiano Caruso – a top-ten finisher at the Giro and Vuelta, former runner-up at the Tour de Suisse and this year’s Tirreno-Adriatico and, last month, 20th place at the Tour de France – will also make the move from BMC Racing, alongside Dylan Teuns.
It's been a busy summer for Bahrain-Merida, with young Brit Stevie Williams joining as a stagiaire ahead of a permanent move next summer and 24-year-old German Phil Bauhaus set to move for 2019, too.
Richie Porte (BMC Racing to Trek-Segafredo)
The biggest departure from the BMC Racing team, however, is Richie Porte after three seasons as their general classification leader which have been fraught with bad luck.
Since joining from Team Sky for the 2016 season, Porte has finished fifth at the Tour de France but then crashed out of the last two editions - both times on stage nine.
The Australian, 33, has won the Tour Down Under, Tour de Romandie and Tour de Suisse, but success on the biggest stage has eluded him and he is now off to pastures new.
His new destination is Trek-Segafredo, who did not trouble the sharp end of the GC in either of the two Grand Tours so far this season. That leaves a gap for Porte to fill, as both team and rider hope to get back on track in 2019.
Harry Tanfield (Canyon-Eisberg to Katusha-Alpecin)
Stevie Williams was the first British rider to confirm his move to the WorldTour stage when he agreed terms with Bahrain-Merida and he will be joined in cycling's top tier by Harry Tanfield.
Tanfield has enjoyed plenty of success at domestic level and this year has made his mark on the international stage too: second in the Commonwealth Games time trial; winner of the first stage of the Tour de Yorkshire; second at the Ronde van Overijseel and Midden-Brabant Poort Omloop one-day races; and second behind Geraint Thomas at the national time trial championships.
The 23-year-old has now taken advantage of Canyon's tie-in with both his UCI Continental level team and Katusha-Alpecin by stepping up to the top tier, where he will join fellow Brit Alex Dowsett in the team's line-up.
And he has shown a level head since the move was confirmed too, admitting: "The hard work starts now and the challenge is for me to show I can progress as a rider."
Niki Terpstra (QuickStep Floors to Direct Energie)
How do you fill a big Sylvain Chavanel-shaped hole in your team roster for the new season? Direct Energie are hoping the answer will be found in Chavanel's former team-mate, Nike Tersptra.
With the veteran Frenchman retiring, Direct Energie have turned to the Dutch Classics star to lead their charge for spring success and Tour de France stage wins (if they, as usual, receive a wildcard for the race).
Paris-Roubaix champion in 2014, Terpstra, 34, added the Tour of Flanders and E3 Harelbeke to his palmares this year in what will now be his eighth and final season with the Belgian hitters.
And QuickStep's loss is very much Direct Energie's gain, as they sign one of the key cogs in the Belgian team's Classics line-up from recent seasons as they bid to further their own ambitions on the cobbles.
Nicolas Roche (BMC Racing to Team Sunweb)
Ireland's Nicolas Roche is another rider off to pastures new in the wake of BMC Racing's merger, with the 34-year-old set to bolster Team Sunweb's supporting cast for Tom Dumoulin.
Roche, who was part of Chris Froome's Tour de France-winning team with Team Sky in 2015, having twice finished in the top ten at the Vuelta earlier in his career, has spent the last two seasons with BMC Racing.
But the Irishman will now provide support in the mountains for Dumoulin and Wilco Kelderman at Team Sunweb, as his new team looks to refine their Grand Tour squad to provide more support for this year's Giro d'Italia and Tour de France runner-up.