Trek Bicycle has reached an agreement with Leopard SA to obtain its WorldTour racing license and create a new team debuting in 2014. A named sponsor since the team’s inception in 2010, beginning next year Trek will assume ownership of the team. While the new team’s organisational management and roster of riders has not been completed, Trek say they will work to conserve a large part of the existing team and current General Manager Luca Guercilena will be retained to manage the team.
Commenting on the deal Leopard CEO Flavio Becca commented: ‘I am proud to hand over this project to the people at Trek Bicycle, who have been a very dependable and loyal partner over the past three years… When we started in the summer of 2010 we had a blank canvas in our hands, a puzzle. Now, three seasons later, we have a team that has won some of the biggest races of cycling with Fabian Cancellara and put two Schleck brothers from Luxembourg together on the podium of the Tour de France. I am also especially pleased to have launched the professional career of a young talented rider like Bob Jungels and that the team has become a major player in professional cycling. I believe cycling has entered a new era, in which a bike manufacturer like Trek Bicycle takes on full ownership of a team. I have taken a lot of pleasure in running this project and I wish the team and all its members a bright future.’
Trek VP Joe Vadeboncoeur added: ‘We’re thrilled to be able to reach this agreement with Leopard… The team has established a great foundation of staff and athletes.’