The 2017 launch event for Team WNT Pro Cycling took place in Madrid, Spain on the 24th February. The event held at WNT Ibérica’s technical centre also included a visit to team partner/supplier Rotor. A major WNT customer in Spain, Rotor manufacturers the world leading Q-Ring system and power meters that the team will use.
The 2017 launch marked a new chapter in the short history of Team WNT Pro Cycling as 2017 sees it step up to UCI level, which will see it race against some of the best ladies teams in the world. Added inspiration for the 15-lady team was from two inspirational Spanish riders, Joanjo Cobo, winner of La Vuelta a España in 2011 and multiple stage winner at La Vuelta Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano who was latterly involved in team management with Euskaltel Euskadi ProTour.
The event saw the 15 riders formally introduced to the audience, with Katie Archibald, Anna Badegruber, Lydia Boylan, Becca Carter, Natalie Grinczer, Hayley Jones, Emily Kay, Josie Knight, Elise Maes, Keira McVitty, Bex Rimmington, Eileen Roe, Gabriella Shaw, Hayley Simmonds and Hannah Walker making up the internationally diverse line-up, with representatives from England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Austria and Luxembourg. The team will embark on a busy race program and is proud to have been invited to participate in the Women’s Tour (Tour of Britain), one of the major races of the UCI World Tour in June.
The arrival of several new members, including National, Olympic, and World Champions, with riders holding no less than current seven national championship titles between them, will boost the team’s prospects in 2017. Speaking at the launch, WNT Global Managing Director, Claude Sun said: “This is going to be an exciting year in which we will continue to learn as we step up to UCI level. It is also a year that we will target podium finishes and wins, while continuing to develop and promote the brand values of WNT. It will also be a fantastic opportunity to expand on out engagement with customers across Europe.”
While 2017 will be seen as a further year of growth and development, as it enters its third year Team WNT Pro Cycling can look back on an already successful history, with Lydia Boylan winning the Irish Road Race Championship in 2015 and 2016. The team entered the Thuringer Rundfahrt in Germany for the first time; then won the team prize in the Ras na mBan, the major stage race in Ireland. 2017 sees Ceratizit come on board as a new partner, with Hope Technology, Rotor, Specialized, Lightweight and OTE continuing their partnerships with the team. “With four national champions on our roster we are looking forward to a successful development year and one that all of the riders and team members will participate in with passion,” says Claude Sun.
The video of the launch can be found on the Team’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/TeamWNT