Santaromita signs for Orica
Orica-GreenEDGE have signed current Italian road race champion Ivan Santaromita for the 2014 season.
The 29-year-old has been a professional since 2006 but his two biggest wins have come in the last 12 months, adding the national title to a stage win at the Giro del Trentino.
Santaromita is an aggressive rider, who climbs well, and the team's sports director, Matt White, is pleased to have him, as well as the "tricolore" jersey, on board for next year.
"People in our management have known Ivan for a long time," White said. "He has been with English-speaking teams before and we are confident that he will fit in easily.
"There is one area we are starting to bolster and that is in our climbing. Ivan certainly does bolster that and we will target a lot of the Italian races with him.
"He is a great addition. Ivan has had a very consistent year with two big wins - one at Trentino and then the biggest win of his career in the Italian National Road Championships. The Italian jersey is a big jersey to bring to GreenEDGE. It's a very revered jersey in Europe."
Santaromita said: "I'm really pleased to get this opportunity. I know a lot of people there already and the team has a great reputation in the peloton. I'm proud to be the first Italian that the team signs up. Plus, it will be a great way to show my national champion's jersey.
"I feel like this team will give me the space to grow as a rider. When given the opportunity, I would obviously also like to repay their faith in me with some results along the way. I think my strengths are mainly in the stage races and hopefully I can be an asset to the team there."