New Brit Team Announced!
Team Endurasport.com – Ready to Roll
(The Birth of a New British Professional Cycle Racing Team)
The Brits say “bullocks” to the current world economic recession and pull together sponsorship for a new pro team. Team Endurasport.com will take to the European roads in 2003 under the leadership of Harry Lodge who retired from professional cycle racing this year. The Team is backed by a range of sponsors, including Endura Clothing, and is setting up a unique supporters club to help it on its way.
Harry is enthusiastic about the future of the team. “We are an ambitious team who, with the help of supporters, are planning to move up the rankings from our initial “trade team three” status. Our aim is to offer young British riders the chance to race on the continent and experience life as a cycling professional. Most of the team will be based in northern Italy and compete regularly in European races. There will also be a small group of riders based in England but riding on the continent from time to time.”
His experience will certainly help him to carry out his new role. Harry Lodge raced for 13 years as a professional, lives in Italy and has a vast experience of the European racing circuit having ridden for Belgian and Italian Teams. He speaks 6 European languages and at 35 will be one of the youngest Sport Directors on the circuit.
Richard Parsons, General Manager of the team, commented “Chris Tonge, Team Captain, Harry and I have been working incredibly hard to gain support from a range of sponsors and are delighted to announce that the team’s main sponsor this year is the Scottish sports clothing company Endura who is providing a vast range of casual and cycling clothing.”
Endura is a well known name in the Cycling world, producing cycle club clothing under both the Endura and TAL brands. One of the team’s co-sponsors are Forth Conservatories, Edinburgh who had formerly supported the RDM-Flanders team. Tekno-Fuel will be providing energy food, drinks and bottles, Jim Walker Ltd will be providing helmets and glasses. Reflex Move, the Salisbury based international removal company, will enter their 7th year of cycle racing sponsorship carrying the British flag as part of their logo on the team jersey. New to cycle racing sponsorship are CMS Bath (Project Managers and Architects from Wiltshire) and the Alkemi Group who, as well as sponsoring the team, will host the official team launch at their headquarters in Corsham in February. BML Printing of Romsey, Hampshire will print all the team photographs and posters and produce the flier for the team Supporters Club. (see below) Foot-Logic will be supplying superfeet custom-made footbeds and smartwoolsocks.
Who is in the team?
The Team Captain on the road will be British rider Chris Tonge who has been a professional for 3 years with RDM-Flanders in Belgium. Richard Parsons said “Chris has been invaluable in getting the team off the ground and in gaining sponsorship. I am sure that he will bring the same enthusiasm and commitment to his role as Team Captain”.
Other riders signed so far include:
Jan Richter (German) very strong road rider, formerly with RDM-Flanders. Jan is one of the top specialist motor paced track riders;
Lee Vertongen (New Zealand) highly talented rider who specializes on the track and in time trialing. Has represented New Zealand at the last two Olympic and Commonwealth Games.
John Ibbotson (British) a talented climber who rode for RDM-Flanders in 2002 and who was National U23 series winner in 2000.
Alex Coutts (British) talented 19 year old Scotsman who won the 2001 National Junior Road Race Series and who raced in the Netherlands and France this year.
Neil Coleman (British) double National U23 Time Trial Champion who will be targeting the U23 National Series and the Premier Calendar series.
Andrew Parsons (British) former Amore E Vita rider and Runner-up in the Under 23 Road Racing Series 2001.
Other riders are being signed and will be announced in the coming weeks.
After the team launch in February, the riders will head south to Italy to train before riding some of the early season training races there including the 4 day Tour of the Riviera. Stage races will feature regularly on the race programme. Provisionally: Giro del Capo, South Africa in March; Ringerike GP, Norway in April; Tour of Slovenia in May and, very importantly the Irish Milk Raas at the end of May. After July the team hope to ride some of the higher category races in Europe. The team is also targeting races in America, Australia’s Sun Tour and New Zealand’s Tour of the Southland at the end of the year whilst the “home team” will be tackling British Premier and Under 23 races.
Join the Team – be a founder member of the Supporters Club
For an annual subscription of Ј85 (individual membership) and Ј100 for families, the team’s unique supporters club will help to fund young riders living and racing expenses. In return, Ј2 of that subscription will go to Cancer Research and the team is offering supporters a replica team jersey and a team supporters website with exclusive access to up to date team news, views and diaries, competitions, photo galleries and team newsletter.
Former Tour of France and Channel 4 TV presenter Australian Allan Peiper has already signed up as the first celebrity member of the supporters club. He has also offered to help the team in Belgium. Other celebrity members will be announced.
Send a single or 3 post dated cheques (1st Dec, 1st March 2003, 1st July 2003) for Ј85 individual membership (Ј100 family membership including an extra jersey) made payable to P&L sports Management, to Team Endurasport.com 63 Waterleaze, Taunton, Somerset, England TA28PX
Join “online” from 10th December at the website www.teamendurasport.com
Please enclose details of your name, home address, e mail address and jersey size/s.
Telephone enquiries to Richard Parsons (01823)252519
Visit their website at www.teamendurasport.com.