Sarah Gigante, currently with Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank, has signed with Movistar for the 2022 season, with a contract lasting until 2024. The 20 year old won the 2019 Australian national road race at just eighteen, and followed it up with the national individual time trial in 2020 and 2021. She’s faced difficulties in 2021, crashing at Flèche Wallone and breaking her collarbone, elbow, and fibula, but this didn’t prevent her from placing eleventh at the Olympic individual time trial in Tokyo.
Gigante said that she was excited to be joining the squad of Movistar riders: “The top drawcard is definitely the squad of awesome riders that I will have the privilege of calling my teammates. I am sure I will be able to learn an incredible amount from the more experienced cyclists and it will be fun to help them smash out wins while hopefully also developing my own racecraft and strength alongside other up-and-coming riders.”
There’s one rider in particular that she’s excited to be working with: “I have been a fan of Annemiek van Vleuten in particular for many years and it feels quite surreal to think that we will be teammates very soon! I still remember lining up to get a photo with her in Belgium just two years ago.”
Sebastián Unzué described Gigante as “one of the biggest under-23 prospects in the peloton right now. She’s a really well rounded athlete, who defends herself brilliantly against the clock, who loves the mountains, and one whom I think will be a huge asset to the team from day one.”
“Our initial goal with her must be to help her out and guide her so she can become the best rider she can be – in that respect, I think that having her riding alongside big leaders, such as Annemiek or Emma, will be really positive for her progression.”
On her future role in the team, Gigante said, “I love that the Movistar Team has such a flexible squad that seems to be able to excel in so many types of races. I think that I will fit well inside the team for this reason, as the idea of adapting to different and exciting roles, races and situations really appeals to me.”
Gigante is currently studying linguistics at geography at the University of Melbourne, but is reducing from full-time to part-time study in order to focus more cycling. She says that she “like[s] having this balance, as studying gives me extra goals that I can focus on and it means that not quite everything in my life is focused on cycling.”
On leaving Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank, she said on Twitter that she was “grateful for all their help in developing me as a cyclist and a person. I made amazing friends and learnt so much. I’m sad to part ways, but also eager to see their continual progress as they step up to a WWT team”.