American former professional rider Bobby Julich will join Team Sky as its dedicated race coach, the British-based squad announced on Wednesday afternoon.

Julich will focus on the training and development of the squad’s younger riders, and aid the team’s equipment research and development. In addition, Julich will use his racing expertise to help with the team’s time trial coaching.

“I am extremely excited to be joining Team Sky,” Julich said. “I have been in the same system for seven years and look forward to learning a new one and meeting new people.

“I think I will fit in perfectly with this team and hope that my experience will help this team progress and reach its goals for the future.”

Established Team Sky race coach Rod Ellingworth said: “Bobby is going to work alongside myself and help develop the coaching role at Team Sky.

“We have a long-term view and a coaching structure that we are aiming to work towards.

“Bobby is the first new person to be taken on with that in mind. The role is very much to be a one-on-one coach with a few of our key riders.

“Race coaching is everything to do with the athletes’ lives. It involves so much; planning, supporting the riders whenever they need it – whether it’s time trialling, positional and tactical work – basically whatever is needed to help them in every area. It could even be getting them back on track after an illness.”

Julich’s professional career spanned from 1996 to 2008, during which he took overall victories in Criterium International (twice), Route du Sud, Paris-Nice, Tour de l’Ain and the Eneco Tour. He finished third overall in the 1998 Tour de France and ninth overall in the 1996 Vuelta a Espana.

Julich finished his career with Team CSC, having previous ridden for Motorola, Cofidis, Credit Agricole and Telekom.

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  • derekbiggerstaff

    It’s not like he’s the first ex-doper Sky have employed, but he never really showed the sort of race winning instincts that Sky need so will he do any good?

  • Mark Jones

    I agree it must be hard, but Team Sky need experience and that whole era was dogged with problems so it’s either get experienced guys from that era or struggle like they did this year. As much as the sponsors will support clean cycling, they also want success so Brailsford has to get coaches in who will improve the team and hopefully continue to promote clean cycling.

  • Wilf

    It must be tricky for Dave Brailsford. On the one hand he is a proponent of clean cycling and I applaud him for that. On the other hand he needs to employ guys who will bring experience and knowledge to the party.

    I cast no aspersions at Bobby Julich, in fact I always loved watching him race, but given the era during which he rode and the teams he rode for it must have been a difficult decision, presumably as all are, for DB to make.

    I for one hope it works out for all parties.