Tiernan-Locke set to make Team Sky debut in Algarve
JON Tiernan-Locke will make his stage race debut for Team Sky in the Volta ao Algarve later this month.
The 28-year-old Plymothian is part of an eight-strong Team Sky squad for the event in southern Portugal from February 14 to 17.
His team-mates will include Colombia's Rigoberto Uran, who was the silver medalist in the men's road race at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Team Sky won the Volta ao Algarve (Tour of Algarve) last year with Australian Richie Porte.
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Tiernan-Locke signed for Team Sky this winter after a hugely successful 2012 season with Endura Racing.
That catapulted him into one of professional cycling's top outfits, where his team-mates include Sir Bradley Wiggins.
Tiernan-Locke won the 2012 Tour of Britain, which featured a stage finish in Dartmouth after a route which took the riders through Tavistock and across Dartmoor.
In addition, he also won three other races and topped the UCI Europe Tour table.
Tiernan-Locke and the rest of Team Sky have prepared for the new season with a winter training camp in Mallorca.
He is currently part of a 10-strong Team Sky squad taking part in the four-day Challenge Mallorca – the equivalent of a pre-season friendly in football – which started on Sunday.
Rather than a pure stage race, each day is a self-contained event and riders do not have to compete in each one.
Tiernan-Locke was 163rd out of 175 finishers on the first day, in the 116-kilometre Trofeo Palma, one minute and 35 seconds behind the winner, Belgian Kenny Dehaes (Lotto Belisol).
Team Sky have a squad of 27 riders and Tiernan-Locke will hope to feature in at least one of the three Grand Tour stage races – the Majors of cycling – during 2013.
They are the Giro d'Italia from May 4 to 26, the Tour de France from June 29 to July 21 and the Vuelta a Espana from August 24 to September 15.