Like this site? Help us to make it better.

Barcelona star Lionel Messi nets gift of Team Sky Pinarello

Footballer presented with bike and Sky jersey by Sir Dave Brailsford and Fausto Pinarello

Google the name “Lionel Messi” and “bicycle” and until yesterday all you’d have got would have been videos of the Barcelona and Argentina football star scoring goals with bicycle kicks. Now, the search results will include a Pinarello Dogma F8 bike in Team Sky colours.

Messi, who has won the Ballon d’Or – awarded to the year’s best player – on four occasions, was presented with the bike at Barcelona’s training facility by Team Sky principal Sir David Brailsford and Fausto Pinarello, chairman of the Italian bike maker.

As well as the bike, customised with words “Leo 10,” which also appear – together with the Argentinian flag – on the sleeve of a Rapha Team Sky jersey that was also presented to him.

The 28-year-old was apparently very taken with the bike’s electronic Shimano Di2 gearing, and was also keen to learn about the bike’s technical aspects as well as finding out how Team Sky go about their training.

The WorldTour team says that its mechanic, David Fernandez, helped organise the gifts after a mutual friend asked if there was any chance of getting Messi a bike.

With the footballer trousering a weekly net salary of £256,000, it’s presumably the thought, rather than the money, that counts here.


Simon joined 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.

Add new comment


Carton | 8 years ago

Not that I don't see the glaringly obvious irony, but I'm a bit surprised everyone is  so caught up in the "millionaire gets free bike" angle. What really got me is how it highlights just how much football is bigger than cycling that Fausto Pinarello and David Brailsford flew out to Barcelona for this. BTW, the point is to make it look like he'll use the bike, auctioning it off would be missing said point.


In any case by the looks of it they just repurposed one of Richie Porte's old bikes.

MartyMcCann | 8 years ago

So what I am getting from this Pinarellos are so expensive, the only way multi-millionaires can afford them is to be given them for free? sad

pubcyclist | 8 years ago

Its not Messi's fault sky and pinarello are stupid enough to hand him a free bike, I hope he auctions it for charity or something.

HarryTrauts replied to pubcyclist | 8 years ago

pubcyclist wrote:

Its not Messi's fault sky and pinarello are stupid enough to hand him a free bike, I hope he auctions it for charity or something.


Absolutely.  I understand the marketing aspect of giving stuff away to the very famous, but it's so ridiculous that people who can well afford these things get them for nothing.  Hopefully something good and helpful comes of it.

Latest Comments