• Rohan Dennis in his national time trial champion skinsuit (AAP)Source: AAP
Rohan Dennis has signed a two-year deal with Bahrain Merida, with the 28-year-old transferring from BMC to pursue his goal of becoming a general classification contender in grand tours.
Cycling Central

Bahrain Merida
9 Aug 2018 - 11:41 PM  UPDATED 10 Aug 2018 - 7:59 AM

The three-time national time trial champion of Australia was announced as the newest member of Bahrain Merida, with team management keen to welcome Dennis into the fold.

“Making this announcement makes us all very proud," said general manager Trent Copeland. "Rohan adds a great value to the team, not only as one of the world best time trialist, but we believe his ability to race in the general classification of grand tours is where we want to invest in and we are all very excited to be able to work together.

"Rohan is a true professional in all areas and we feel his professional mentality fits our team perfectly. His enthusiasm and exciting way of racing will definitely bring something special to the team. We welcome him and we’re excited to be able to support him through all his success he deserves with us.”

Dennis has said publicly that he's been on a three-year path to grand tour success, with Dennis entering the third-year of that plan in 2019. So far he has had mixed fortunes at the grand tours, with illness and crashes keeping him from success in 2017 and some poor legs at key moments during the 2018 Giro.

“I am extremely excited to be joining Bahrain Merida for the next two years," said Dennis. "The organisation has been upfront and honest about their plans and objectives for me the entire time, which is really positive. As I know, we are working towards the same goals.

"I’m looking forward to working with a team that is going to invest in my future and I am very keen to see what we can achieve together. I would like to thank all at BMC for a great past four years where I felt I made good progress in my career and I can’t wait to continue that progress with Bahrain Merida.”

Dennis' BMC teammate Damiano Caruso will accompany Dennis in the switch over to the Bahrain-registered squad. Caruso is regarded as a key lieutenant in the mountains and can also ride as a team leader if the situation calls for it.

“My aim is to continue as I did in the last seasons” says Carsuo, who performed very well at 2017 Tour de Suisse (2nd overall) and 2018 Tirreno-Adriatico (2nd overall). “My role within the team will be to have my chance for some short stage races and then support the team captain in the Grand Tours”.

Dennis and Caruso join a Bahrain-Merida squad already full of climbing talent, with four-time grand tour winner Vincenzo Nibali the established leader of the squad.