Anaur Manan, the speedy Malaysian who boasts one of the fastest sprints in Asia, has joined China-based Champion System for the 2012 season, the team announced Wednesday.
The squad will debut at the Professional Continental level next season and Manan brings added firepower for the sprints.
“I really want break my level and go further. I’ve been in the same place for long enough now. I think that Champion System have a very strong team, which will help a lot,” said the 25-year-old Manan. “I’d like to get the chance to make it to the WorldTour.”
The team will be looking to expand beyond Asia and enter events in the United States and Europe this season.
Team manager Ed Beamon said Manan will get his chances in bigger races.
“I’m really excited, and look forward to getting him to the U.S. and seeing how he performs in the NCC criteriums, they should really suit his style,” Beamon said. “But of course it’s Europe that will be the real test, it will be interesting to see how he adapts.”
Manan is one of several new faces to bolster Champion System, which has a midrange goal of trying to become Asia’s first WorldTour team.
Nearly a dozen new riders join the squad, including Americans Craig Lewis and Chris Butler and Aussies Aaron Kemps and William Clarke.