Jasper Bovenhuis. Dutch and one of the first members of the Academy. He was one of the few not U23 riders on the team, arriving as second-year elite cyclist.
What about him?
Jasper had spent some time at Rabobank U23, changed teams, lost faith and was ready to pick up his former sport (speed skating) again. He lost any hope but we saw something in him despite his age. We focused on specific roles within the team and he became our captain. From then on, he could develop with the right focus.
How did he perform?
Great! Besides his excellent win at the Arno Wallaard Memorial and his eight place at Ronde van Drenthe, his performances were mostly visible only for the insiders. We noticed his progress and the development behind the scenes.
What was next after the Academy?
It was up to us to convince a pro team that Jasper deserved a chance to show his potential at the highest level. Not an easy job, but it eventually worked. In August Team Cannondale–Garmin gave him the opportunity to be a trainee for the remainder of the season. In our opinion, Jasper did what he had to do: he showed what he was capable of but in the eyes of the number one US team it was not enough. They didn’t offer him a contract for the following season. Nevertheless, Jasper can be proud of himself, from almost leaving the sport to being part of one of the best teams in the world in just one year.