Ethan Hayter and Michal Kwiatkowski have been named co-leaders of a strong Ineos Grenadiers team for the 2021 Tour of Britain.
The pairing will lead a sextet containing considerable power and ability ahead of a tilt at home race triumph.
Australians Richie Porte and Rohan Dennis are also included, along with Owain Doull and Carlos Rodriguez.
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Hayter has enjoyed a breakthrough summer of success, winning silver in the madison at Tokyo 2020 alongside Matthew Walls and following his Olympic success with victory at the Tour of Norway later in August.
He shares leadership duties with the veteran Kwaitkowski, ever a danger in week-long stage races, who finished second overall in the 2014 Tour of Britain.
It appears an Ineos squad named with an eye on a team time trial in Carmarthenshire that could prove pivotal.
Dennis and Porte’s ability against the clock will prove useful on Stage Three, which will be one of two stages to take place in Doull’s native Wales.
The inclusion of rising star Rodriguez is an exciting one, with the Spaniard runner-up at the Tour de l’Avenir earlier this year.
He has time trial pedigree, too – the 20-year-old finished third at the Spanish National Championships in Busot in June.
It will be the first time Porte and Dennis have returned to their bikes since the Tokyo Olympitcs.
Dennis secured a bronze medal in the men’s time trial in Japan.
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The Ineos team will do battle with a strong field that includes Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) and Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma).
The pair are both using the race as preparation for the World Championships in Flanders later in September and could contend for the overall crown.
The race begins with a flat stage from Penzance to Bodmin in Cornwall on Sunday 5 September.
It concludes with a lumpy 173km eighth stage that will finish in the centre of Aberdeen.
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Source: Euro Sports