Team Endurasport.com - Ready to Roll
(The Birth of a New British Professional Cycle Racing 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
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 areCMS 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 socks.
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), a very strong road rider, formerly with RDM-Flanders. Jan
is one of the top specialist motor paced track riders.
Strong track presence in the team
Lee Vertongen (New Zealand), a highly talented rider who specializes on the track
and in time trialing. Has represented New Zealand at the last two Olympic and
Martin Vestby (Norway), National Norwegian Squad rider who has twice ridden the
Tour de l'Avenir; many victories as an amateur last season.
John Ibbotson (British,) a talented climber who rode for RDM-Flanders in 2002
and who was National U23 series winner in 2000. (Interview link below under Related Articles.)
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 £85 (individual membership) and £100 for families, the team's unique supporters club will help to fund young
riders living and racing expenses. In return, £2 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
Send a single or 3 post dated cheques (1st Dec, 1st March 2003, 1st July 2003)
for £85 individual membership (£100 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, email address and jersey
Telephone enquiries to Richard Parsons (01823)252519
photo thanks to gingercat and the excellent www.trackcycling.co.nz