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August 20, 2014 – With the transfer season in full effect and both Peter Sagan and Ivan Basso going to the newly reloaded Tinkoff-Saxo squad, the rumored merger between Cannondale and Garmin has been officially announced.
Cannondale will not only become title sponsor but take an ownership stake in Slipstream Sports, while Garmin will step down to significant, but second tier sponsorship. The move for Cannondale will help it finally identify as an American team with real global appeal, versus its days with Saeco and Liquigas, two squads that always felt very Italian. Even after taking over ownership of Brixia, Ted King was the sole American rider on the predominantly Italian team.
The official name of the squad and roster has not yet been announced. Brixia Sport, the original management company behind Liquigas and Cannondale Pro Cycling was purchased by Cannondale Sports Group along with its World Tour license two years ago. The future of Brixia Sport and the World Tour license was not addressed in the announcement.
Cannondale and Slipstream’s Press Release can be read below.
Cannondale Pro Cycling and Slipstream Sports Join Forces
Wilton, Conn. and Boulder, Colo – August 20, 2014 – Cannondale and Slipstream Sports today announced that Cannondale Pro Cycling SpA and Slipstream Sports will join forces in 2015. Cannondale, a premium brand of Dorel Industries, Inc. (TSX: DII.B, DII.A), will become a title sponsor and technical bicycle sponsor for the team and will take an ownership stake in the management organization of Slipsteam Sports LLC. Slipstream Sports, the top American professional cycling organization dedicated to ethical sport and developing the next generation of champions, will manage the overall operations of the team. Garmin, a key partner of Slipstream Sports since 2008, will remain a significant sponsor of the team in 2015. More information, including the official team roster will become available later this year.
“Cannondale is excited to team up with Slipstream to create the next evolution of Cannondale Pro Cycling with the most progressive and innovative team in the peloton,” said Peter Woods, President and CEO, Dorel Recreational/Leisure. “Professional athletes play a key role in testing our products in some of the most extreme conditions worldwide helping us to create the perfect ride for our consumers. We are thrilled about progressing our product development approach while bringing exciting racing to our fans around the world.”
“Slipstream Sports and Cannondale share key philosophies of a focus on innovation, developing the next generation of champions and a commitment to ethical sport,” said Jonathan Vaughters, CEO of Slipstream Sports. “We are happy to work with another company, that, like Garmin, so closely shares our goals. We will be adding some great talent to an already outstanding roster and we believe the team will build on past successes and will produce very exciting racing in 2015. We look forward to what we can achieve together, both on and off the road.”
Cannondale has been involved with pro racing since 1997 when it became the technical sponsor of Saeco and the first US manufacturer to sponsor a European Pro Tour team. Since Dorel acquired Cannondale in 2008, investments in pro racing have steadily increased and have enhanced the awareness of the Cannondale brand. In 2010, Cannondale became a co-sponsor of the Liquigas-Cannondale Team and became title sponsor and owner in 2013 with the creation of Cannondale Pro Cycling.
Since 2007, the team has won three Grand Tours including the Giro d’Italia in 2007 and 2010 as well as the Vuelta a España in 2010. During that time, the team also won four Tour de France jerseys, including the 2009 Polka Dot Jersey and the Green Jersey in 2012, 2013 and at the just completed 2014 race, along with countless prestigious individual races. Throughout this time, the team has ridden the race-proven line of Cannondale bikes including the SuperSix, Slice, Slice RS, Synapse and the “Best Bike in the World,” the SuperSix EVO.
Founded in 2004, Slipstream Sports has evolved from a group of promising young U.S. riders to one of the top teams in the Pro Tour. Garmin came on board in 2008 and remains an important and significant sponsor of the team. Known for its commitment to innovation, for animating races around the world, and for its progressive anti-doping stance, Slipstream Sports has held the yellow jersey, won stages, including recently with Stage 19 in 2014, and won the Best Team competition at the Tour de France. Slipstream Sports has won the 2011 Paris-Roubaix, 2012 Giro d’Italia, 2013 Liege-Bastogne-Liege, and the 2014 Dauphine, and its riders have stood atop the podium on countless races across the globe.