Cannondale announced that it is partnering with Brixia Sport to form a new pro-cycling team to take to the roads next year. The contract goes into effect January 1 when the newly named "Cannondale Pro Cycling Team" will be officially formed around one of the most promising young cyclists in the sport today, Peter Sagan.
The full roster for the team has yet to be determined but Sagan, who won the Green Jersey at this year's Tour de France, will form the nucleus of a young team that will also include Moreno Moser and Elia Vivani. They'll be joined by grizzled veteran Ivan Basso who will serve as a mentor of sorts to the squad.
Cannondale's relationship with the current team actually began in 2007 when they became the technical sponsor for Liquigas Pro Cycling. In 2010 the two companies became co-sponsors of the Liquigas-Cannondale Team and next year the company become the primary sponsor to the group of riders. Since coming on board back in 2007, the team has won the 2007 and 2010 Giro d'Italia, the 2010 Vuelta a Espana and two Tour de France Jerseys. In addition to Sagan's 2012 Green Jersey, the team also won a Polka Dot Jersey belonging to the King of the Mountains, awarded to Franco Pellizotti, back in 2009.
Personally, I think building a squad around Sagan is an excellent idea. That young man looks like he'll be a great rider and he seems to have the talent to be not only an impressive sprinter, but a GC contender at the Tour de France as well. It's just a matter of where he decides to focus his talents. He has a lot of upside and he's just 22 years old. Either way, it is going to be fun to watch the new Cannondale Team in the years ahead.