Olympic and World Champion Nicole Cooke has swapped one big bike retailer sponsor for another, signing a deal with online cycle shop Wiggle, for her new Vision1 racing team.
The women’s road racing team, formed by Cooke to allow her to continue working with her Olympics support staff, will be training the next generation of talented riders on Focus bikes, provided by Wiggle. Cooke rode to glory in the Olympics and World Championships on a top-of-the-range Boardman pro carbon race bike, available to consumers in Halfords.
She says: “I have followed the development of Focus over the past two years and have been impressed with their technology and quality of bikes.
“I'm really excited to be teaming up with Wiggle and Focus. We have chosen our partners carefully because we want to create a really strong image and we’re confident this will be a great partnership.”
The Vision1 riders will be using Focus Cayo and Focus Izalco frames for training and racing. Other team sponsors include SRAM, Continental, Ritchey and Haico Wheels.
Cooke said: “I am looking forward to starting the new season and it will be special in many ways. The new team is like a new beginning for me with its own challenges - and then to be in the Rainbow jersey as world champ will be amazing.”
The Vision1 team includes a mix of young British talents such as Dani King and Katie Curtis together with more experienced riders Helen Wyman and Gabby Day who it is hoped will bring the best out of each other over the coming seasons to realise their full potential.
Cooke launched the team in October because she believed that it was time to “give something back to the sport” having achieved her cycling dreams.
She added: “I think that by using my experience of the highest level of racing together with the skills and expertise of the support staff we can create a team structure which can make talented British riders part of the strongest team in women’s cycling by 2012.”
Focus bikes are handbuilt in a factory near Hamburg where they are fitted with components from brands such as Shimano, Ritchey, FSA, Magura, Hayes, SRAM, RockShox, Fox, Lightweight and Campagnolo. As reported last month, Maxgear is another sponsor.
For more about the latest Focus bikes check out our review