Team Giant-Alpecin announced on Monday the formation of a development programme in addition to their men's and women's squads. Initially, there will be one development team, which will feed into the men's WorldTour squad.
The squad will be based in Germany, but will "internationally oriented" to identify and develop new talent. The team will use the same experts as the elite squads to offer young riders guidance, coaching and sports science to develop top talent - specifically targeting German riders and staff in order to advance German cycling from the lower ranks through to the WorldTour.
“We want to be an advanced development program where German and international riders will be supported by the latest technologies, expertise, coaching and knowledge," Team Giant-Alpecin CEO Iwan Spekenbrink said. "We will adopt a broad approach and focus equally on the riders' education, since not every talent will ultimately make it into the WorldTour.
"It all centers around the objective of development, first as a person and ultimately as a professional athlete. But at the very minimum we want to offer something relevant to those young men and prepare them for the next chapter in their life, whether it's on or off the bike. We will aim to be the world's ideal gateway to a successful career in the UCI WorldTour.
"Germany is a country with huge potential for cycling. A lot of people ride their bikes, and we want to recruit the best talents from those youngsters wishing to pursue a career in professional cycling. With the German Talent Days together with BDR, this new development program, plus the men's and women's elite programs, we believe we will have the perfect pyramid in place."