Nicolas Roche named on Sky squad for Vuelta

Nicolas Roche has been named in Team Sky’s nine-man roster for the Vuelta a Espana, which starts on Saturday in the Andalucian town of Puerto Banus on the Costa del Sol.

Nicolas Roche named on Sky squad for Vuelta

The Irishman will be there to support Chris Froome who is bidding to become only the second Tour de France champion to win the Vuelta in the same year.

Team Sky have named a line-up stacked with experience, with Roche being the team’s second-in-command should accident or injury befall Froome.

Roche is no stranger to doubling up and doing two Grand Tours back-to-back as he’s completed Giro d’Italia-Tour de France doubles on four previous occasions.

He usually goes well in the Vuelta and on his last attempt in 2013 he won a stage, wore the leader’s jersey and finished fifth overall.

Completing the line-up for the final Grand Tour of the season will be Geraint Thomas, Sergio Henao, Mikel Nieve, Vasil Kiryienka, Christian Knees, Ian Boswell and Salvatore Puccio.

There was no place in the team for Roche’s fellow Irishman Philip Deignan but Dan Martin has been given a leadership role by his Garmin Cannondale outfit.

Martin will be supported by American trio Joe Dombrowksi, Ben King and Andrew Talansky as well Matej Mohoric and Andre Cordoso with the remaining three yet to be confirmed.

It’s expected to be one of Martin’s final races with the team as he looks set to join Belgian squad Etixx-QuickStep.

Martin is out of a contract at the end of this year and has not signed another, with Etixx general manager Patrick Lefevre stating a deal to secure the Irishman’s services was “close” to being done.

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