ICA is investing in the young and talented, and has just signed:
French amateur Champion Alexis Renard (20)
Estonian Norman Vahtra (22)
Tel-Aviv, October 16th, 2019
Although facing its most challenging season ever with its quest to race WT next season, Israel Cycling Academy has just completed a double move to inject young and promising talent into the team.
The Team announces that It has signed French Amateur Champion Alexis Renard (20) (13 Victories in 2019) and the strong and fast upcoming Estonian rider Norman Vatra. Both were signed on two years’ contracts.
But It was made quite clear by the team’s pro-management that it expects both riders to have an impact and help the team from the outset. “We believe that both of them can contribute although we plan to make sure that they have time to get into the WT level racing by adopting the race program to better suit their needs” explained the Team’s pro manager Kjell Carlstrom.
Both riders expressed their happiness for the opportunity to make this leap, especially Vahtra who admitted that after he received the final confirmation that ICA will sign him, “I could not sleep all night. It was the happiest day of my life”.
For the Frenchman Renard, it was less of a shock as he spent the last 3 months racing successfully for ICA as a trainee: “It’s a new life which will start for me. I’m super excited”, he said.
Carlstrom Explained that Renard, an all-around punchy classic rider who stared for one of the best amateur teams in France – Cotes d’Armor – has turned to be as good as advertised. “He really impressed us, both in attitude and racing quality“, said ICA’s boss. “He is a strong rider with a lot of potential for improvement still, and we are sure he will prove to be a great asset”.
Alexis, who took part in a five single day and stage races with ICA as a trainee, expressed confidence that he will have an impact: “WT is not a problem, I’m ready to work hard to get to the level and help the team. And I believe I can even win. Why not?”
Vahtra has proved in the past year that he is rapidly improving. After winning five amateur races in 2018, he is more than doubled his tally this season with hometown Team Tartu, winning 13 races including 7 UCI races.
Vahtra: “I got 20-30 seconds absolute power and sprint as my biggest strength plus the ability to handle some gentle slopes and Time Trial”.
ICA pro manager Carlstrom explained that he plans to use the Estonian as part of the team’s sprint “train” in bigger races and give him a chance to win in smaller ones. “He has a good capacity in both lead-out and sprints, and he is far from reaching his full potential which is exactly the talent we look to develop”.