Michael Woods signs with Israel Start-Up Nation
Aug 12 2020 08:22 pm CET

Michael Woods signs with Israel Start-Up Nation
Michael Woods signs with Israel Start-Up Nation
Israel Start-Up Nation logo

Canadian rider Michael Woods is joining Israel Start-Up Nation next season to be Chris Froome's super-domestique.

The rider is the newest signing for a 2021 season that intends to be historic for the Israeli formation. The formation has not only singed the four-time winner of the Tour de France, but also names like Daryl Impey, Carl Fredrik Hagen and Patrick Bevin.

Woods brings his climbing and classic talents to the squad, and he's glad to reunite with Sylvan Adams, co-owner of Israel Start-Up Nation, and Paulo Saldanha, performance manager. "Paulo and Sylvan are the reason that I am a pro cyclist today," said Woods. "I first met Paulo in 2013, and he immediately took me under his wing. He pushed me to quit my jobs (working as a bank teller and at a bike shop), and he told me I had the ability to be a pro.

"Because of my age (27 at the time), I was too old to qualify for government grants or get a place on a development team. It was difficult for me to justify leaving my job. However, Paulo connected me with Sylvan, and the two of them invested in me when nobody else would. Through their support and belief, I managed to rise through the cycling ranks and make it to the highest level of the sport."

Woods has been in the team currently known as EF Pro Cycling since 2016, and there he took victories in Milano-Torino and one stage of the Vuelta a España, as well at top-three spots at Liege-Bastogne-Liege and the World Championships of 2018. "I have had five great years with Slipstream Sports (EF Education First), which made making the decision to leave their program difficult," he explained.

"However, when it comes down to it, Paulo and Sylvan have believed in me from day one, and I am very excited to reciprocate that belief and be a part of ISN in 2021."