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Cannondale-Drapac crowdfunding effort launches with major matching pledge

#SaveArgyle campaign is to keep Slipstream Sports alive in 2018

Slipstream Sports has launched its crowdfunding campaign and announced that the first $2m of donations will be matched by Fairly Group.

On Sunday we reported how Slipstream Sports, which owns the Cannondale-Drapac UCI WorldTour team, was planning to launch a crowdfunding campaign in an attempt to secure its future following “discouraging news” about an anticipated sponsor for 2018. has reported that Swedish online gambling company Unibet withdrew sponsorship at the last minute. Ten years ago the company sponsored another team – for whom this year’s Tour de France runner-up, Rigoberto Uran, now with Cannondale-Drapac, rode. However, Tour de France organisers ASO refused to allow the team to ride its races, citing French laws restricting gambling.

Slipstream CEO Jonathan Vaughters has been left needing to fill a $7m hole in his budget to secure the team’s future and is looking to crowdfund a sizeable proportion.

The team initially set up a webpage on which people who wanted to back it could register their interest and earlier today an Indiegogo page was launched.

It was also announced that every dollar donated, up to $2 million, will be matched by risk management firm Fairly Group and other key supporters.

Alex Fairly, President of the Fairly Group, commented: “American pro cycling has a rich history of competitive excellence and Slipstream has carried the torch for many years, having developed many of America’s best cycling talents and taken them to the Tour de France.

“Our ethos is built on our willingness to step into our client’s most difficult challenges, and our goal in making this commitment is to provide a spark that continues to ignite the flame of support for America's best pro cyclists competing on cycling’s WorldTour stage.”

For $25 you’ll get regular email updates and access to a member’s section of the Slipstream website.

Larger contributions will get everything from mugs and totes to handwritten thank you notes from the riders, team kit and invitations to training camps. $20,000 will get you a used team bike at the end of the season.

The team makes it clear that donations will only be processed if the team continues in 2018.

Even if it is successful, it is questionable whether the same trick could be pulled off for 2019, but it would at least buy Slipstream another season in which to seek out new sponsors.

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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