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As first reported by VeloNews last week, Yates is leaving Ineos after just two years on the British team.
UAE Team Emirates emerged as a late suitor for Yates after several sources told VeloNews that Ineos had offered the British rider half of his current salary to stay. Yates joined Ineos Grenadiers at the start of the 2021 season on a contract in excess of around 2 million euros per season.
There was interest from several other teams, including Team BikeExchange-Jayco with a possible return to Yates old team, but negotiations could not be agreed when it came to salary.
Yates’s agent was at the Tour de France in Paris and attended the Team BikeExchange-Jayco’s afterparty, increasing the amount of speculation of a possible return after two years away.
Negotiations did take place but budgets and salaries could not be agreed after the Australian team had already re-signed Adam Yates’ brother Simon, and Michael Matthews on new deals.
The new Paris team, run by Jerome Pineau, was also linked with Yates’s signature but the British rider eventually held out for a deal he deemed best.
Yates, 30, had been hoping to secure a bigger contract at the Tour de France and he went into the race with the chance to lead Ineos Grenadiers.
However COVID-19 struck on the eve of the race and he caught another illness in the final week. He eventually finished a solid ninth on GC despite those hurdles and sacrificing his chances for Geraint Thomas. Ineos would eventually make Yates an offer to stay but it would fall well short of his expectations.
UAE Team Emirates, on the other hand, is keen on becoming the world’s number-one ranked team and the chance to sign Yates on a long-term deal will greatly enhance both the team’s roster and the chance of toping the WorldTour ranking in the coming seasons.
“I’m really excited to join UAE Team Emirates. I have seen the growth of the team over the years and the opportunity to join was one that I could not turn down. I feel that I’m entering my peak years as a rider and the team will get the best out of me. I look forward to riding with many of the top riders in the world and to contribute to the team becoming number one in the world,” Yates said in a press release.
Earlier this week team boss Mauro Gianetti confirmed to VeloNews that the team had been negotiating with Yates on a possible deal.
On Tuesday the news was confirmed.
“We are very pleased to welcome Adam into our team for the coming years. His ability to win and achieve top results across a wide variety of races is very impressive and he has proven to be a consistent talent. We all know he is a rider of great panache and we believe that he will be the right fit for our structure as we continue to reinforce the team for the coming years,” Gianetti said.
The arrival of Yates greatly enhances UAE’s arsenal when it comes to stage racing. The team already boasts two-time Tour de France winner Tadej Pogacar as well as Joao Almeida, Marc Soler, Juan Ayuso, George Bennett and Brandon McNulty.
It’s unclear where Yates will have his chances when it comes to grand tours. The rider has yet to win a grand tour stage, despite his undoubted talent and after Pogacar it appears that Ayuso and Almeida will have the chance to lead in either the Giro d’Italia or the Vuelta a Espana.
What is certain is that Yates will bring a consistent level of performance when it comes to week-long stage races and support in grand tours.
✍️ We're delighted to announce the signing of @AdamYates7 on a three-year deal.
Welcome Adam 🇬🇧 !
— @UAE-TeamEmirates (@TeamEmiratesUAE) September 20, 2022