After four seasons in the women's professional peloton, the Velocio-SRAM team will cease to exist on January 1st, 2016 following an announcement from owner Kristy Scrymgeour. Having created Velocio Sports in aftermath of HTC's withdrawal from the sport in 2011, Scrymgeour has overseen the American and German based team that was initially known as Specialized-lululemon having previously been involved in the HTC and Colombia set up.
"It's been a rewarding time," Scrymgeour said in a statement. "I've really enjoyed the challenge and the people I've had the chance to work with and I'm really proud of what we've achieved over the years. It's especially been a pleasure to work with industry partners and media who are supportive of the women's side of the sport. The support of SRAM, Cervelo, Global Merino and all of our other sponsors has been phenomenal. It's exciting to see increased interest in women's cycling and I look forward to seeing that interest turn into growth and more opportunities for women in cycling in the future."
With Specialized and lululemon both ending their association with the team at the end of last season, Scrymgeour's clothing company Velocio and SRAM stepped in as replacements with a crownfunding campaign raising further finances for the 2015 season. Scrymgeour added her thanks and gratitude to all those associated with the team over the last four seasons.
"To the fans of the sport and the personal supporters of this team, of which there are many, I want to extend a huge thanks," she said. "We've been extremely lucky to have you behind us at every step of the way especially when we needed it most. Special thanks go to Jose Fernandez, Helge Reipenhof, Steve Van der Zwan, Doug Ellis, Bob and Tess Stapleton, Alex Wassmann, David Wassmann, Diane Thibert, Mark Gibbon and of course to all of our Project-X crowdfunding supporters who provided constant enthusiasm at every race or event."
Velocio-SRAM, three time world team time trial champions, have enjoyed a successful 2015 season so far with overall victories at Energiewacht Tour and the Aviva Women's Tour via time trial world champion Lisa Brennauer along with the Women's Tour of California through Trixi Worrack and the Gracia Orlova courtesy of Alena Amialiusik. The team has also enjoyed stage wins at the Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen and Giro d'Italia Internazionale Femminile and recently the RideLondon Grand Prix and Sparkassen Giro World Cup.
"As for the riders and the staff, I've been lucky to work with people who bring passion and energy to the sport. I've enjoyed watching them dedicate themselves to the goals of the team first and foremost and their individual goals after that," she added. "Together they've had tremendous success this year winning the Aviva Women's Tour, Tour of California, stage wins at the Giro, Thueringen, multi national titles and more. I'll continue to cheer them all on in the future years."
Scrymgeour will remain in cycling through two business ventures she co-created last year, Velocio and Ally's Bar brands, adding she made the announcement early so her riders can focus on the remainder of the season and have time to ensure deals for the 2016 season and beyond.
"I'm excited about the future and I'm looking forward to new challenges. For now we still have two months left of exciting racing and the team is focussed on trying to defend their World TTT Championship title," she said.
"This was a hard decision for me, but I'm announcing early to give the riders a clear opportunity to find other teams for next year. I believe in these riders and I believe in women's cycling and I will continue to advocate for growth in the sport."