Simon Clarke: “This new contract is a reward for never giving up”
Sylvan Adams, IPT Partner: “Simon has proved his worth as a teammate and a winner in his own right”
Kjell Carlström, IPT General Manager: “Simon has become an integral part of IPT”
From not having a team at the end of 2021, to going on to score the biggest win of his career at the Tour de France, Simon Clarke’s 2022 season is a perfect example of persistence and hard work.
After signing a last-minute deal with Israel – Premier Tech for the 2022 season, the 36-year-old Australian has added another two years to his contract and will continue his successful chapter with IPT in 2023 and 2024.
Clarke has quickly established himself as a key member of the IPT roster explains General Manager Kjell Carlström.
“When we signed Simon Clarke at the beginning of the season, we knew to expect a professional and hard-working rider but really, we couldn’t have asked for more. Simon hit the ground running with a number of strong performances at the start of the season and then seeing him win on the cobbles at the Tour de France was really an incredible moment. Simon has quickly become an integral part of our team and it is our pleasure to sign Simon again for the next two seasons,” says Carlström.
Persistence pays off
For Clarke, a new contract with Israel – Premier Tech is a testament to his ‘never give up’ attitude.
“It has been a huge rollercoaster in 2022 for me. Obviously ending the 2021 season with no team and then just chipping away, staying committed nonetheless, then getting a chance with Israel – Premier Tech, and then going on to having what has probably been one of the best seasons of my career. You have to take the ups and the downs but it has been a great year. I feel like the stage win in the Tour de France and the new contract I have signed is basically a reward for never giving up, sticking at it, staying positive even in the difficult times,” explains Clarke.
“I’m super happy to stay on with IPT considering they were the team that gave me that lifeline when I had no team. It was an easy decision to stick with the people that gave me that chance for the future. I’ve keen to stay on for a couple more years and hopefully we can continue the way this year has started.”
As IPT Partner Sylvan Adams admits, IPT always had its sights set on Clarke.
“I have a confession to make about Simon Clarke. We wanted to sign him in 2021, but our roster was at capacity and it simply was not possible. But, when Simon fell out of contract due to the unfortunate demise of the Qhubeka team, we were able to correct that error, and Simon was added as our last roster addition. Simon has done everything we expected, and has proved his worth both as the consummate teammate, but also as a winner in his own right, as we saw on the mythical cobblestone stage 5 of the Tour de France. It’s great to have him back, and I wish Simon and IPT great success together in the next years,” says Adams.
Clarke and IPT: A winning combination
Clarke’s Tour de France stage win was not only the first in his career, but the first for Israel – Premier Tech. Although he may have achieved his biggest career goal, that’s not stopping Clarke from going for more.
“A stage win in the Tour is definitely my biggest career objective and to have ticked that off with Israel – Premier Tech this year has been great for me personally, but also for the team,” adds Clarke. “It was an honor to get the team their first Tour stage win. Next year, I just want to continue in the same fashion. I’ve set off on the right foot this year with this team and I plan to continue as I’ve been doing and hopefully some results keep coming.”