Estonian Tanel Kangert will join the #PinkArgyle family in 2019. The 31-year-old has spent the last eight years riding for Astana and previously spent two seasons with AG2R La Mondiale. The move to EF Education First – Drapac p/b Cannondale offers him a new opportunity on a diverse squad.
“I have wondered if there is more in professional cycling for me to see and try,” said Kangert. “I have had a good time with my current team, but after eight years, I felt that the time to move on was now. I wanted to get out of my comfort zone. I have raced for a French team and a Kazakh team with Italian influence, so I was looking for a completely different environment.
“I’m looking forward to new training methods, different race programs and new equipment,” Kangert added. “I also aim to push myself a little bit further physically. EF Education First – Drapac p/b Cannondale ticked all the boxes for me when I started to look for a team.”
“Tanel is a proven and stable asset at the largest races in the world,” said EF Pro Cycling CEO and founder Jonathan Vaughters. “He adds value as a teammate and as a winner on his own right. We hope to help him reach his full potential and are happy he chose our team.”
Kangert has achieved nine professional victories, including stage wins at Tour de Suisse, Giro del Trentino and Abu Dhabi, where he also won the general classification. He finished 16th overall at the 2018 Tour de France and animated the 67-kilometer three-mountain stage with what Vaughters has called “his swashbuckling breakaway.” Yet Kangert, the reigning Estonian time trial champion looks toward his contribution in collective performances rather than individual results to define himself as a rider.
“I have always known that if in a team there is a leader who has a better chance for a result than I do, I should help him as much as possible, and most often, there is someone who has a better chance than me,” said Kangert. “I enjoy my role as an important helper who can sometimes go for a personal result.”
Kangert has humble ambitions that fit with his down-to-earth nature for his first season in his new team.
“I would like to be physically good already in the beginning of the season,” he said. “This is something I’ve been able to achieve so far. I’d like to find my time trial legs, and, of course, I hope to secure some great results with the team.”