Saxo Bank is giving clients the opportunity to experience the life of a professional cyclist in a new initiative launched this week in London by Vuelta champion Alberto Contador and Tinkoff-Saxo manager Bjarne Riis.
Ride Like a Pro will be the focus of the first year of the Danish business’s new SaxoSport initiative which aims to create VIP sports clubs in Europe and Asia for its clients.
The company says that “existing and potential clients will be given the opportunity to live and train like a Tinkoff-Saxo cycling professional, learning everything from the anatomy of the bike and the body to training like the Tinkoff-Saxo team.”
In all, 30 people will be invited to take part in the programme, which will last between three and six months – not full-time, clearly – and finish with them riding the route of a UCI WorldTour race. Features include:
• Peer-to-peer network for financial industry insiders with passion for performance and healthy living
• Intensive personalised training towards personal goals
• High frequency group training sessions with supervision
• Interactions with World Tour Team Tinkoff-Saxo
• Opportunity to complete stages of Giro d'Italia, Tour de Suisse and Vuelta a España right before watching the professionals go through the same challenges.
The initiative was unveiled at Dulwich College, the south London public school that counts UKIP leader Nigel Farage, comedian Bob Monkhouse, polar explorer Ernest Shackleton and writer PG Wodehouse among its former pupils.
It’s also been featured in movies including Tomb Raider starring Angelina Jolie, where it was the scene of an auction, and Legally Blonde where it stood in for Harvard for the graduation scene.
Afterwards Contador and guests headed to Herne Hill Velodrome for a spin, where as we reported yesterday a piece of plastic cut from a water bottle was pressed into service to act as a mudguard on the Spaniard’s bike.
Matteo Cassini of Saxo Bank said: "Saxo has been supporting the team for the past seven seasons. Our employees fully embrace our long-standing support of sporting excellence and healthy living and we are now ready to take our commitment to the next level with SaxoSport.
"We encourage anyone from smaller asset managers, emerging managers, hedge funds, money managers, family offices and investors in general with a passion for cycling, competition and performance to get involved in our new 'Ride Like A Pro' project and seize this once in a lifetime opportunity."
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.