Rising US talent Matthew Riccitello joins Israel-Premier Tech as stagiaire for rest of 2022

Hagens Berman Axeon does it again: Team of Axel Merckx steers another young star closer to the WorldTour.

Photo: Getty Images

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Matthew Riccitello is set to step from Hagens Berman Axeon and direct into the heat of Vuelta a Burgos.

It was confirmed Friday the Arizonan climbing ace has been tapped to ride as trainee for Israel Premier Tech for the rest of this season.

“We have had our eye on Matthew Riccitello for a while and have followed his progress at the U23 level, so we are excited for him to join IPT as a stagiaire,” Israel Premier Tech sport manager Rik Verbrugghe said. “He is an up-and-coming talent and at just 20-years-old. Matthew has a bright future ahead of him.”

The Burgos race at the start of next month will throw the Hagens Berman Axeon graduate direct into battle with WorldTour stars like João Almeida, Alejandro Valverde and Giro d’Italia winner Jai Hindley.

“I’m super excited to race with Israel-Premier Tech as a stagiaire. It’s a great opportunity to get more race experience, especially with the WorldTour guys as I’ve been looking up to a lot of them throughout my progression in the sport,” Ricitello said.

“I’m looking forward to soaking it all in and learning as much as I can from the more experienced guys.”

Riccitello is the latest rider off the conveyor of the Hagens Berman Axeon talent factory.

Axel Merckx’s crew already delivered riders like Almeida, Tao Geoghegan Hart and Joe Dombrowski into the top-tier of pro cycling.

Eighteen months at the U.S. development squad handed Riccitello overall victory at the 2.2 Istarsko Proljeće-Istrian Spring Trophy in March and put him on track for a close fourth at the U.S. pro nationals TT this summer.

“Looking towards the future, I see myself as a GC rider focusing on stage races so I’m grateful to IPT for giving me the opportunity to race in Burgos and further my development,” Riccitello said.

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