Dowsett, Hollenstein join Israel Cycling Academy

British TT champion and Swiss all-rounder brought onto new team from Katusha-Alpecin.

Alex Dowsett and Reto Hollenstein have joined new WorldTour team Israel Cycling Academy.

The team joined the WorldTour after the merger of former top-tier team Katusha-Alpecin and Pro Continental outfit Israel Cycling Academy. Both Dowsett and Hollenstein raced with Katusha-Alpecin in 2019 and are two of the many riders who have been retained as the two squads merge.

Dowsett, 31, is reigning British national time trial champion, and has held the title for six of the past eight years. He also bettered Rohan Dennis’s hour record in 2015, clocking up 52.937km in the sixty minutes.

Swiss veteran Hollenstein, 34 years of age, has been brought on board to support leaders in the classics and stage races.

The team posted on Facebook, Saturday, confirming the news.

“I am absolutely sure that both riders will strengthen the team in many ways,” said team manager Kjell Carlström. “Alex is great in ITT’s and TTT’s, but also in supporting the team, for example, in bringing key riders into position.

“Reto  is experienced, knows what he is doing, and is therefore super valuable for the team.”

“I think ICA is a very progressive team with a focus on performance without compromise,” said Dowsett. “There seems to be modern-day thinking. As a rider, that is all I ask for.”

Dowsett missed out on the podium at the world championships in 2019, but has an Olympic gold in his sights for 2020.

“I am looking forward to it and strongly focused on the Olympic Games,” he said. “Obviously, I first need to get selected for the national team. Afterward, I want to win the gold medal in Tokyo. Israel Cycling Academy is a perfect fit for these goals.”

Rick Zabel, Mads Wurtz Schmidts, Dani Navarro, and Jenthe Biermans have also joined the new team from Katusha-Alpecin.

American Travis McCabe is expected to be coming on board, though the contract has not yet been finalized.

Dan Martin, Rory Sutherland, and Andre Greipel have also confirmed contracts with Israel Cycling Academy for 2020 and will bring experience and leadership to the newest team in the WorldTour.