Team Sunweb announced the signing of American Megan Jastrab, the reigning Junior World Champion, for the next two seasons. The 18-year-old has not been able to race this season because of the coronavirus pandemic but in 2019 she proved herself in the European junior races, winning the Trofeo Binda and Healthy Ageing Tour and taking second in Gent-Wevelgem juniors.
A multi-time junior national champion, Jastrab has also excelled on the track, winning the Omnium in the 2019 Junior World Track Championships in addition to numerous national titles. She found success at the elite level, winning a stage of the Redlands Bicycle Classic in 2019 but was denied an entry to the Colorado Classic that year because UCI rules would not allow a 17-year-old to compete at the 2.1 level.
She came into the UCI Road World Championships in Yorkshire as the odds-on favourite and, racing from the front, delivered a stunning victory from a small lead group.
Turning 19 in January, Jastrab will age out of the junior ranks but will retain her world title after the UCI cancelled the Junior races in the 2020 World Championships because of the coronavirus travel restrictions. She will take on her first full elite season with Sunweb in 2021, joining compatriot Coryn Rivera in the team.
“I have always thought of Team Sunweb as one of the best women’s teams and I’ve always had the dream of racing WorldTour,” Jastrab said in a team press release. “I’m extremely excited and motivated to start racing here.
“I think Team Sunweb has a great program set up with a clear support structure to help riders reach their goals. They have a great mix of riders and I’m excited to learn from each of them. I am also looking forward to improving and learning from racing at the WorldTour level. It has always been a dream to race at this level, so I’m extremely thankful and excited to be given this opportunity.”
Team Sunweb coach Hans Timmermans said the team was impressed by Jastrab in her first year as a junior in 2017. “Making the step up to juniors in 2019, Megan showed how strong she was with impressive wins throughout the year and then becoming World Champion in Yorkshire – which is very impressive for a first year junior. Despite not racing on the road this year, she’s continued her development and has been selected for the USA Olympic Long Team.
“We see Megan mainly as a sprinter but she has a lot of qualities to become a strong classics rider in the future. Our initial focus will be to develop all of her qualities and make her transition into WorldTour racing as smooth as possible, but also focus on her sprints where she’ll get her chances too.”