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Leadbelly

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Re: Mens' transfers and Rumors 2019-20
« Reply #240 on: October 03, 2019, 09:31 »
Israel Cycling Academy to  to take control of the Katusha team and join World Tour in 2020

So how does this fulfill the original mission statement of the team? :slow

I can't actually find what the original mission statement was, but it probably boiled down to "developing cycling in Israel" which obviously it still will be doing and riding in the Tour (whatever you think of it) can only help that.

Since it inception in 2015 though there have been other missions which have come and gone as the team has going through various changes. In it's first year the team had a link with Peter Sagan and thus the development bit was extended to include Slovakia (and Poland). That only lasted a year and the next one was about cyclists from non-traditional cycling countries getting a chance. Finally with Sylvan Adams (and his money) getting on board, that led to the current mission about getting the team (and Israeli riders) to the Tour. Outside of the Israeli and Canadian riders, the nationality focus now (if there is any) is more about having a melting pot of numerous countries.

The World Tour team is only the tip of the iceberg though in what the team and Adams is doing to promote cycling in Israel. They have the link up with Cote d'Armor to enable young Israeli riders to "get their heads kicked in" on the roads of France. There are not one, but two devo squads. They have scholarship programs for young coaches, there are eight cycling schools, Adams paid half the money to build a velodrome in Tel Aviv and I'm probably missing out a few things in addition to that.

All the above doesn't guarantee success of course and my worry now is that the gap that the homegrown riders will have to bridge might be too big. They'll have to retain quite a few of the smaller .1 raced in their program and in future years a proper CT devo team might not go amiss.
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