The Ineos Grenadiers announced the signing of young American Andrew ‘AJ’ August, a multi-discipline talent, who impressed with a stage win and overall podium at the Redlands Bicycle Classic this year and two summit stage wins in the Ain Bugey Valromey Tour and the overall classification.
“AJ has really impressed us in the time we’ve spent with him, so we’re thrilled he’s agreed to become a Grenadier,” Rod Ellingworth, the team’s deputy team principal said.
“We’ve been following his progress and results this season and he’s clearly demonstrated his talent. We believe that by working together we can help him reach his full potential. He’s a talented young man and it’s obvious he also has a very good head on his shoulders.”
August, who hails from Rochester, New York, had a stand-out year, winning the Koppenbergcross and the junior national titles in cyclocross.
He had even more success on the road, winning the junior individual time trial national title and the Grand Prix West Bohemia, second overall in the Course de la Paix nations cup, a stage win in the SPIE Internationale Juniorendriedaagse.
The British WorldTour outfit signed August on a three-year contract, one year longer than the usual neo-pro offering, and is no surprise after he auditioned in a team training camp earlier this year. Having celebrated his 18th birthday just two weeks ago, he will follow a path similar to fellow Hot Tubes team alumnus Magnus Sheffield, who signed with the team at age 19.
“Magnus has been key – he’s someone that I can look to for advice. But regardless of him being in the team, it’s still the perfect environment for me,” August said.
“I had the opportunity to go on a team camp in January and could immediately see just how professionally it is run. Of course, it’s a big jump to come to the team straight out of juniors but the team’s approach gives me the confidence that it’s the right thing to do.”
August’s short-term goals are in shorter WorldTour stage races where he can show his climbing prowess.
“I’ve always been a good climber and I’ve enjoyed competing as a GC rider in the racing that I’ve done so far. My ambition would be the same in the pro ranks, but of course, it will take some time to develop into that type of rider. I’m not afraid to discover and challenge myself in other areas too.”