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WCN quicklink >>  Giant Bicycles continue sponsorship     T-Mobile becomes Team High Road

 

 

Deutsche Telekom ends cycling sponsorship

Magenta to disappear from the peloton 

Team will continue, as Team High Road

High Road Sports Website

Deutsche Telekom AG has elected to end sponsorship of professional cycling with immediate effect. This decision was taken by the Board of Management of the Bonn-based telecommunications group, which had been a sponsor of professional cycling since 1991. Sponsorship of both the men’s and women's teams is ended with this action. 

"We arrived at this decision to separate our brand from further exposure from doping in sport and cycling specifically. This was a difficult decision given our long history of support for professional cycling and the efforts of Bob Stapleton in managing the team in 2007", said Deutsche Telekom Board member and CEO of T-Mobile International Hamid Akhavan. “We have an obligation to our employees, customers and shareholders to focus our attention and resources on our core businesses”, added Akhavan.

"We have worked very hard with the current team management to promote clean cycling sport but we reached the decision to continue our efforts to rid all sports of doping by applying our resources in other directions. Deutsche Telekom AG wants to make it clear that this action is not based on any disagreement with or misconduct by team management”, Akhavan emphasised.  

Nothing has changed in Deutsche Telekom's belief that sponsoring activities also entail taking responsibility. "We will continue to fulfil our obligations to the fight against doping, to which we contribute a significant amount of resources", declared Akhavan.

Bob Stapleton added, "We hope to go forward independently with the team to achieve our goals of continued competitive success and being a leader in anti-doping efforts in professional cycling."  Over the past few days the Group has been negotiating with Neuer Straßen Sport, the operator of the T-Mobile Team, for the termination of the contract that was set to run until December 31, 2010. Both parties have agreed to keep the details confidential.

High Road Sports Inc is pleased to announce that its Elite Men's and Women's cycling teams will continue racing in 2008 after T-Mobile has ended its engagement. The teams will now be known as “Team High Road”.

High Road Sports Inc. holds a ProTour Team License and will seek authorisation of the change in the team’s identity and operations from the governing body, the UCI. High Road and its subsidiaries own the infrastructure of both teams.  

T-Mobile's decision to end its involvement in professional cycling is a challenge for the sport and our team. We will review and adapt our operations, and continue to advance our leadership position in athletic success and commitment to clean and fair sport that began during our work with T-Mobile” says Bob Stapleton of High Road.

2007 was a very successful year for both teams, with the men's ProTourTeam taking 37 victories for the season and the women ending the season as the number one ranked team in the World by the UCI.

We have an outstanding international roster of exciting young talent backed by proven veteran leadership for 2008” added Stapleton.

High Road Sports will use the next few weeks in intensive preparation for the 2008 racing season. “We have good options, but plenty of work to do to begin racing in less than 60 days” noted Stapleton.

T-Mobile was a North American-based women's team set-up and owned by Bob Stapleton in 2002 until its move over to Europe in 2006. The team recruited European-based riders, including Judith Arndt as well as retaining US-based stars such as Ina-Yoko Teutenberg and Kimberly Bruckner Baldwin and recruiting former T-Mobile (USA) rider Kim Anderson and enjoyed considerable success in its first year in Europe. In 2007, the team finished highest in the UCI team rankings and recorded numerous stage and overall victories.  The women's team has not had any direct involvement with the doping scandals which have rocked the men's team.

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Team High Road roster 2008:

 

Mara Abbott (USA)*

Kim Anderson (USA)

Judith Arndt (Germany) 

Kate Bates (Australia) 

Chantal Beltman (Netherlands) 

Emilia Fahlin (Sweden) 

Luise Keller (Germany)*

Alex Rhodes (Australia)

Madeleine Sandig (Germany)

Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (Germany) 

Linda Villumsen (Denmark)

Anke Wichmann (Germany) 

Oenone Wood (Australia)

 


* Denotes new rider in 2008

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