Christian Knees is motivated to continue his career at Team INEOS as he prepares to start a 10th consecutive season with the team.
With 30 Monuments and 20 Grand Tours under his belt Knees has amassed a wealth of experience, and was on hand to help the team claim its first Tour de France and Giro d’Italia victories.
“I’m really happy to extend my time with the team,” said Knees after signing a one-year deal. “I feel very comfortable here and to be going into the my 10th year with the team next year is a great achievement. I’m really pleased that I can still continue to do what I love.
“I could never have imagined when I signed that I would be on the team for 10 years. I knew when I looked at the riders the team had, even back then, that it was a really strong setup. To stay for so long in a team like this – which has now won the Tour de France seven times – it shows you can’t be too bad as a bike rider.”
I’ve always been somebody who likes to encourage the younger guys along and help them if they need advice, as well as being there as a role model if I can be.
He added: “I’ve always been somebody who likes to encourage the younger guys along and help them if they need advice, as well as being there as a role model if I can be. As a rider who has done 20 Grand Tours they can see you and look at what you’re doing to get through a three-week race. They can try to emulate that. Trying to help the developing riders out is something I really enjoy.
“On the other hand it’s still a competition within the team. So these young up and coming guys give me motivation and I know I need to be on a high level to be selected for races. It’s a win-win situation.”
Knees’ coach Leigh Bryan is full of praise for the way he continues to approach the sport, and the impact it has on those around him.
He explained: “Not only is Christian going into his 10th season with the team, he’s been a pro for 16 years. His professionalism is second to none. For the young guys on the team he shows how pro cycling should be in the way that he commits to his training and his racing. He’s versatile and he can do any type of race the team calls upon him for.
“There are not many riders still racing in the peloton with that amount of experience. He knows what it takes to perform right through the season and be as good from day one as he is at the end. That’s something young guys can aspire to.”