Letterkenny cyclist Philip Deignan will make his debut for Team Sky at the Santos Tour Down Under on Sunday.
The 30-year-old agreed terms to join Team Sky in September after a fine second season with the UnitedHealthcare squad, which saw him win the Tour of the Gila, finish runner-up at the Tour de Beauce, and claim top-10 finishes at both the Tours of Utah, California and the USA Pro Challenge.
Deignan first turned professional in 2005 with AG2R Prevoyance before making his Grand Tour debut at the 2007 Vuelta a Espana.
The highlight of Deignan’s career to date was his stage win and ninth place finish overall at the 2009 Vuelta.
Deignan struggled with injury and illness throughout 2010 and particularly 2011, when he was a member of RadioShack.
However, last year’s success saw him join Team Sky, despite finishing the season with a broken collarbone sustained in the Tour of Britain.
The Santos Tour Down Under is a UCI WorldTour cycling race, held in Adelaide, South Australia, from Sunday, January 19, until Sunday, January 26.
He is been selected to ride the stage race alongside Richie Porte, Ian Stannard, Bernard Eisel, Chris Sutton, Luke Rowe and Geraint Thomas.