Michal Golas and Michal Kwiatkowski sign for Quick Step
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Friday, August 05, 2011

Michal Golas and Michal Kwiatkowski sign for Quick Step

by Ben Atkins at 11:02 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Belgian team recognising rise of Polish cycling with more East European recruits

quick stepQuick Step has announced the signing of Michal Golas and Michal Kwiatkowski for 2012, both on to year contracts. The Polish riders are two of only eight from their country currently riding for first division ProTeams and the Belgian team’s acquisition reflects both the rising strength of cycling in Poland, and a desire to become more international.

“The arrival of these two young Polish riders contributes to the team’s current project of internationalisation for the near future,” said Quick Step general manager Patrick Lefevere. “They are two interesting, young guys in whom we want to invest for the future of the team. In addition, Poland is an important country and it’s growing in terms of cycling culture and passion, as shown by the ever improving quality of the Tour de Pologne.”

27-year-old Golas has spent the last two and a half seasons with Vacansoleil-DCM, scoring a number of top ten finishes. He rode the Giro d’Italia this year, but made headlines with the somewhat bizarre decision to quit the race midway through to marry his fiancé Agata. Since then he has finished fourth overall in the Tour de Wallonie and is currently racing in his home tour, the Tour de Pologne.

Kwiatkowski is currently with RadoShack, having joined after one year with Spanish Continental team CajaRural. As a time trial specialist the 21-year-old has been junior Polish and World champion, European champion, as well as European road race champion. In the spring he finished third overall in both the Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen and the Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde.

While the Quick Step team’s infrastructure, sponsors and roots are Belgian, as is the Omega Pharma sponsor that will join in 2012, the team is now backed by Czech billionaire Zdenek Bakala. The team is currently home to Czech World cyclocross champion Zdenek Stybar, a well as Slovenian Jan Tratnik.

As well as the two Polish riders, the team has also signed Slovakian twin Martin and Peter Velits for 2012.

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