Bike thieves have struck again, this time targeting the RusVelo Professional Continental team and the GourmetfeinWels Continental team. The Russian team did not mention the financial damage, but the Austrian team said that it lost equipment worth 150,000 Euro.
The RusVelo team base at Lonato del Garda, Italy, was broken into at about 3am on Thursday morning, according to its website. Video cameras caught two unidentified males breaking into the warehouse through the roof. They took 30 bikes.
“We are the fifth team this year which falls victim of an incident like that in the region of Lombardy only,” said RusVelo team manager Renat Khamidulin. “There is no doubt that shortly the stolen Colnago bikes will pop up in online stores; it’s just the chain of events that has repeated itself a number of times. All we can do is to appeal to potential buyers – don’t be lured into purchasing these bikes!”
He added, “Let me assure the fans of RusVelo that last night’s events will not disrupt training and racing; we have excellent, reliable partners and we thank them for helping us with creating a sufficient supply of spare bikes. Our activity will go ahead as planned.”
The Gourmetfein bikes were stolen during the Tour of Austria, when all 15 bikes were taken from the hotel overnight. Roberto Marcuzzo, team co-ordinator for the race, started an action to help the team continue.
He sent all the other teams at the race a text message explaining the situation, and "within 16 minutes we had 30 bikes.The support of the international and national teams was unbelieveable,” he said.
“I have been in cycling a long time, but have never seen such a great and engaged show of support.”