Mannion moves to Drapac for 2016

Gavin Mannion will ride for Australian team Drapac for the coming year after finishing top five at the USA Pro Challenge in 2015.

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

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Gavin Mannion added his name to a growing list of young American pros who are stepping up to Pro Continental teams for the coming season, as Drapac announced Friday that the 24-year-old will join its roster in 2016.

Though he spent some time as a Garmin stagiaire at the close of 2014, Mannion landed with Continental team Jelly Belly in 2015. There, he was successful in prominent U.S. stage races — he finished third overall at Tour of the Gila and fourth overall at the USA Pro Challenge.

“I am looking forward to the new setting and my new teammates,” Mannion said. “Moving to the Pro Conti level is the next step up for me, and I am honored move up with the professional environment and support structure of Drapac. Adapting to the new team, racing a much longer and more demanding calendar across the world will be the main challenges for me and I am up for them. I have always gotten along well with Australia teammates and directors in the past and feel Australians have a similar mentality to myself so I look forward to the year ahead.”

Drapac’s top 2015 results came from sprinter Wouter Wippert, who will leave the team for Cannondale in 2016. Wippert won stage 6 of the Tour Down Under.

On Friday, the Australian team also announced the signing of Tasmanian Nathan Earle, 27, who comes from Team Sky, where he rode for two years.

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