FDJ is the abbreviation for France’s lottery, La Française des Jeux. Since 1997, it has been the sponsor of the team managed by former racing cyclist Marc Madiot.
FDJ has 34-year-old Steve Morabito and 27-year-old Sébastien Reichenbach, two racers from western Switzerland, under contract. Both are key domestiques, but still have some freedom to pursue their own ambitions during the Tour de Suisse. For example, Morabito had the privilege of wearing the jersey of the best Swiss racer in 2015. After the two racers from western Switzerland competed in last year’s Critérium du Dauphiné held at almost the same time, it would be nice to see the French team make room for the Swiss racers in the Tour de Suisse again this year.
The top FDJ racer is 25-year-old Thibaut Pinot, who is a grand tour specialist and put up a tough fight in the Tour de Suisse 2015 against Dutchman Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) and Welshman Geraint Thomas (Sky) for victory in the general classification. But it was Simon Spilak of Slovenia (Katusha) who was beaming with a winner’s smile at the end.
The team has always sported the national colours of France: royal blue, white and red, with a four-leaf clover.