Team High Road will start the 2008 Tour de France as "Team Columbia"
Team High Road has found a sponsor with Columbia Sportswear Company, a global leader in the active outdoor apparel and footwear industries. The deal will see Team High Road change its name to Team Columbia, starting with upcoming Tour de France on July 5. The team will continue to race under the new name until the end of the season. The new team uniforms will be unveiled in Brest, France on July 3, two days before the start of the Grande Boucle.
Tim Boyle, president and chief executive officer of Columbia Sportswear Company, said that "Columbia Sportswear Company's sponsorship of Team Columbia provides an ideal opportunity to elevate the positioning of Columbia in multiple European markets by communicating our authentic, outdoor, active, American brand to our target demographic."
The three-year sponsorship agreement runs through 2010 and includes both the men's and women's professional cycling teams, which have won over 70 races combined in 2008 – the most wins of any competing team. In addition, at least 15 riders from Team Columbia are expected to represent their countries in the upcoming Olympics.
"This is a partnership with great potential," said High Road Owner Bob Stapleton. "Columbia is a market leader with innovative products, progressive management, and ambitious marketing objectives. We welcome Columbia Sportswear as a key partner for the next several years," Stapleton added.