Today we say goodbye to four professional teams who will no longer be seen in the peloton in 2017.
The beginning makes IAM Cycling. Michel Thétaz’s team started in 2013 at pro-continental level and was able to advance to world tour level in 2015. In the last two years, when InfrontRingier organized the Tour de Suisse, we experienced many wonderful moments and were delighted to see that many Swiss racers were given a chance to develop further at IAM Cycling.
We will certainly remember Stefan Denifl’s victory as best climber 2015. In addition, Martin Elmiger secured the jersey for the best Swiss player in 2016. Jarlinson Pantano won the final sprint in Davos this year and took the team’s longed-for TdS stage win at the last opportunity.
Next we say goodbye with some photos of Team Tinkoff. Tinkoff rode under the leadership of its founder Bjarne Riis from 2001 – 2014 under different signs and names. In 2014 Riis sold the team to the Russian businessman Oleg Tinkov. Riis initially remained General Manager and was later replaced. Oleg Tinkov decided a year ago to disband the team at the end of 2016.
At the Tour de Suisse, world champion Peter Sagan was always in the mood for victory. It is not without reason that the Slovakian holds the sole record with a total of 13 stage victories.
We also say Lampre-Merida ciao to the team. Lampre is a dinosaur in business under the leadership of Giuseppe Saronni and started out as Team Colnago-Lampre in 1991. After a number of mistakes and confusions, the team will continue as Team UAE Abu Dhabi in 2017. But the traditional Lampre clothing with lots of pink will definitely be part of history.
In the recent past, Lampre rider Rui Costa caused a sensation as three-time overall winner of the Tour de Suisse from 2012-2014. The last victory in 2015 was won by Kristijan Durasek on the 2nd stage in Risch/Rotkreuz after a surprise attack shortly before the finish.
Goodbye also to the Swiss pro-continental Team Roth, which was able to take part in the Tour de Suisse in 2016 thanks to a wild card. Fortunately, the team will continue at Continental level in 2017 as the Roth-Akros Cycling Team. This is an important sign for the young Swiss cycling talents.
At the Tour de Suisse 2016, the team with its many young riders was highly motivated and always active. Again and again the young drivers managed to escape into an escape group.