Team RadioShack Merges with Team Leopard-Trek to Become Team RadioShack-Nissan-Trek
New team RadioShack-Nissan-Trek will feature top riders from Team RadioShack and Leopard-Trek
The owners behind Team RadioShack and Team Leopard-Trek earlier today jointly announced that Team RadioShack and Team Leopard-Trek will merge for the 2012 and 2013 seasons and consist of the creme-de-la-creme from both current teams.
More specifically, RadioShack and Nissan are joining the Leopard-Trek WorldTour team as sponsors for the 2012 and 2013 seasons. The team will hold a license in Luxembourg and formally be named the RadioShack-Nissan-Trek Professional Cycling Team.
All marketing operations will be operated out of Austin, Texas by CSE Pro Cycling LLC. All sporting operations will be managed by Johan Bruyneel Sports Management in both Belgium and Luxembourg.
According to a team spokesperson the new team will continue to represent Lance Armstrong's LIVESTRONG organization in the global fight against cancer.
The teams have announced that the new team will feature riders such as Time trial World Champion Fabian Cancellara; Andy Schleck and Fränk Schleck, the second and third place finishers at the 2011 Tour de France; Tour of California Champion Chris Horner; two-time Tour de France runner-up Andreas Klöden; respective national champions Matthew Busche, Janez Jani Brajkovic, Nelson Oliveira and Robert Wagner; standout neo-pros Jesse Sergent and Ben King; all-around power and current 2011 Vuelta a Espana GC hopeful Jakob Fuglsang; all-rounder Haimar Zubeldia; and sprinter Daniele Bennati.
The new team staff will be formed as a combination of members of the current team staffs, with further details to be announced later this month according to the team spokesperson.
"With our sponsors' continuing commitment and the professionalism of our riders, I'm confident that Team RadioShack-Nissan-Trek will dominate cycling for years to come," Johan Bruyneel commented about the merger.
"With Team RadioShack, we won 30 races and dominated the most important American races in 2011. Now thanks to the presence of riders like Fabian Cancellara and the Schleck brothers, we have the potential to win not only Classics and major stage races but Grand Tours as well," Bruyneel added and concluded
"We will form a team of thirty riders, in regulation with the UCI rules. All contracts with riders and staff that are already signed with Team Leopard-Trek or Team RadioShack will be respected. We are grateful our sponsors believe in this project. This is a great milestone for our team and our global sport."
It is noteworthy that Grand Tour GC contender Levi Leipheimer has been left out of the 2012 and 2013 Team RadioShack-Nissan-Trek roster and he is currently speculated to be joining Team BMC Racing, Team MoviStar or Bjarne Riis' Team Saxo Bank-SunGard.
It is also noteworthy that the team is trying to feature three major company brand names in its team name in order to obtain promotional value for all three brands and companies in media around the world without having to pay the various media entities for advertising space. This practice is becoming increasingly popular with teams.