Team Visma-Lease a Bike has announced the signing of Julien Vermote, a 34-year-old experienced rider, on a one-year contract. Vermote steps into the shoes of Lennard Hofstede, who recently ended his cycling career. Vermote’s addition to the team is seen as a strategic move, bringing in a wealth of experience and immediate support in the helper role.
Merijn Zeeman, the team’s sports director, expressed satisfaction with Vermote’s signing, highlighting his extensive experience and motivation. Zeeman emphasised the urgent need for a replacement following Hofstede’s departure and praised Vermote’s passion and dedication to his profession.
Vermote, who has been a part of the professional peloton since 2011, shared his enthusiasm for the new role. Grateful for the opportunity, he expressed eagerness to contribute to Team Visma-Lease a Bike, a leading team in the cycling world. Vermote is looking forward to joining the team’s training camp next week, ready to begin his new journey.
The Belgian rider has had a distinguished career, racing for teams such as QuickStep, Dimension Data, Cofidis, and Alpecin-Deceuninck. After a stint at the amateur level last season with Secteur-Duolar, Vermote is now making a return to the WorldTour as the final rider on Visma-Lease a Bike’s 2024 squad.
Vermote’s career boasts three professional victories, including the 2012 Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen and stages at the 2014 and 2016 Tour of Britain. His last season saw him actively participating in the Belgian kermesse circuit, achieving a win and several podium finishes.
Vermote joins other significant signings for the 2024 season, including Matteo Jorgenson from Movistar, Ben Tulett from Ineos Grenadiers, and Cian Uijtdebroeks from Bora-Hansgrohe. He will be filling the gap left by big departures like Primož Roglič and Tobias Foss. Vermote is set to play a crucial role as an all-round domestique in the star-studded squad.