THE signing of Ben Grenda turns Team Polygon into a major contender for domestic cycling honours, team manager Nigel Baker said yesterday.
Announcing Grenda's arrival, Baker predicted the former national under- 23 criterium champion would transform his team dynamic.
"With the guidance and experience of people like Ben and Jason Rigg, we will ride at the front of races and the youngsters will have a much quicker development," he said.
"Ben will not only bring a lot of experience to the team but also the ability to win races, which will bring a whole new dynamic for the young guys' development.
"If we do the full series, Ben has the ability to win the National Road Series next year. He comes with a pretty big rap having spent last season gaining experience in Europe. This is terrific for Tasmanian cycling."
Grenda, who gained plenty of experience riding with the Rock Werchter and Rapha Condor Sharp teams, signed for a year with Polygon to ride while he returns to university in Launceston.
The contract was secured on the day the 22-year-old secured his second successive podium finish in the Launceston Criterium, finishing third behind Neil Van Der Ploeg and Scott Law.
"He was close to retiring but this has worked out well for him and he's as keen as mustard again," Baker added.
"Having a training partner of his calibre will add a lot to the team."
The 16-strong all- Tasmanian Polygon team is braced for a busy month which begins with Georgia Baker, Lauren Perry, Macey Stewart, Oliver Martin and Gerald Evans contesting the Tasmanian Christmas Carnivals series.
A team of eight will ride the under-23 and open events at the road nationals in Ballarat from January 9-13 shortly after six take advantage of the team's invitation to a star-studded Herald- Sun Tour set to feature an Australian national team including Matt Goss, English and New Zealand national teams plus the top eight NRS teams.