Shimano Believe! initiative sends top pros back to their clubs to inspire next generation (+ video)

Shimano hopes current generation can inspire a future one

by Simon_MacMichael   March 26, 2013  

A new initiative from Shimano called Believe! sees some of today’s leading young riders returning to the cycling clubs where they started their journey to the pinnacle of the sport, with the hope of inspiring a new generation to follow them.

The initiative from the Japanese components giant follows a lot of talk in recent months about how young pros represent a break with cycling’s doping past, giving hope for a cleaner future for the sport, something that underpins the campaign.

Among the riders featured are Team Sky’s Ian Stannard, Edvald Boasson Hagen and Salvatore Puccio, plus Blanco Pro Cycling’s Bauke Mollema, Arnaud Démare of FDJ and Argos-Shimano’s John Degenkolb.

Shimano says that its aim is “to reunite cycling and fans again” and invites fans who share its vision for the future of cycling to share their thoughts on its Facebook page.

“Young professional riders play a central role in Shimano’s initiative” it adds.“They return to the cycling club where they made their first steps into cycling. They ride with children to inspire, train and share their experiences with them. Their most important message: Believe! And you are able to achieve more than you have ever imagined.”

A behind the scenes video shows Blanco’s Mollema returning to his former club in Groningen.

Mollema, winner of the points classification in the 2011 Vuelta – surprisingly, the first Dutch rider to win a jersey of any description at a Grand Tour since 1992 – said: “When I was a child I looked up to the best riders, most of all in the Tour de France.

“At that time I was dreaming to ride and perform in the Tour myself. I absolutely believe in a clean sport.

“When I look around, seeing all those children, they are the future! It would be fantastic if one of these children would also make it to become a professional rider”

Degenkolb, the German sprinter who won five stages in last year’s Vuelta, added: “Looking to these children I don’t feel like a hero.

“When I was young it was my dream to become a professional rider. I have been a pro rider for three years now and I hope to be an example for these children.

“I believe in the future of cycling. In the past people made mistakes, but if we work hard and make the right decisions, in the future the sport will be clean again.”

6 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Great idea, but did Stannard and Puccio really go to the same club or is it a new "sky junior" kit the kids are wearing?

Gkam84's picture

posted by Gkam84 [8645 posts]
26th March 2013 - 11:54

like this
Like (3)

How unrealistic are those photos? I thought 99.74% of kids were obese Big Grin

G-bitch's picture

posted by G-bitch [302 posts]
26th March 2013 - 14:02

like this
Like (3)

Edvald looks decidedly creepy with that kid...

posted by pdows47 [103 posts]
26th March 2013 - 17:01

like this
Like (2)

...whereas Stannard looks as though he's gazing down enviously at that full head of hair.

posted by wild man [276 posts]
26th March 2013 - 20:36

like this
Like (2)

I'm sure stannard had something to do with high wycombe CC.

posted by pj [138 posts]
27th March 2013 - 8:49

like this
Like (3)

Stannard was Team MK, he was here on Wednesday filming his bit with the kids.

posted by JK [22 posts]
19th April 2013 - 11:19

like this
9 Likes