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Androni Giocattoli Sidermec gambles on former cross-country skier

Former Olympic cross-country skier Martí Vigo del Arco joins Italian squad having shown 'exceptional values' in physical testing.

Androni Giocattoli Sidermec has inked a two-year deal with unknown name Marti Vigo del Arco – unknown in the cycling world, that is.

The 22-year-old Spaniard is a former Olympic cross-country skier that only took up cycling in the past year, and is now set to go all-in with the Italian ProTeam in what will be his professional debut. Vigo took part in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games, finishing 19th in the team sprint, and is described as having shown “exceptional values in physical tests.”

Team boss Gianni Savio rolled the dice and signed Vigo through 2022 having learned of the youngster’s test results, with the press release stating he “did not miss the opportunity to bet on a new talent.”

The veteran manager has a long history of unearthing unknown names, including Egan Bernal, who Savio signed in 2016 as an anonymous mountain biker before the Colombian joined Team Sky and went on to win the 2019 Tour de France.

Vigo began cycling when his girlfriend and fellow skier Lydia Iglesias took to the saddle. She too has now turned pro and races with the Cronos Casa Dorada squad.

Vigo’s brief flirtation with racing on the local scene has shown promising results so far. He took sixth in his debut race, the Aragon championship, and then backed this up with 13th at the Valenciaga Memorial.