CrowdRiders, a professional cycling team owned and managed by cycling fans, aims for its debut in the 2010 season. A similar scheme already exists in football, with the English MyFootballClub.
CrowdRiders' goal is to find 40.000 cycling fans that jointly want to run this team. Every member pays an annual membership fee of 55 euro, which will give them direct decision power within the team – from team name, shirt design and rider selection to race calendar composition and sports director choice.
The budget will be four million euro, financed through membership fees, T-Shirt sales and material sponsors. This amount is comparable with Barloworld or Agritubel, which participated in last year's 2008 Tour de France.
MyFootballClub has 30,000 members and manages a team called Ebbsfleet United. It started in February of 2008 and three months later they won the FA Trophy final in Wembley stadium against Torquay United with 1:0.
The initiative was started by Marc Frencken, who is the club's first member. You can find details on www.crowdriders.com.