The German bicycle brand Focus will be the new bike supplier of Team Milram for the 2009 season. Milram with its future headquarter in Dortmund, Germany, will be set up as an international oriented team with German roots. Focus is based in Cloppenburg, in northern Germany.
Herwig Reus, head of marketing at Focus, explained the new collaboration. "The new Milram team bike is very eligible because of its construction. As the first rumours were spreading during the Tour de France the question asked the most by the pros was when they could have a first ride on it."
Focus was founded in 1991 and racing on the top level is one of the major objectives. The founding idea of Focus was that racers would be building bikes for racers. Mike Kluge has done just yet and his partner Hanka Kupfernagel, the current time trial World Champion, has achieved many wins on Focus bikes.
Mathias Seidler, CEO of Derby Cycle Werke GmbH, said that racing is at the heart of Focus. "Some years ago we decided to move Focus, formerly well known as a more mountain bike oriented brand, into the premiere league of the road bike business. At that time the vision was born to enter the top level of road racing." Derby Cycle Werke GmbH owns a string of companies, including Focus.
With many enthusiastic racers and experts at the same table, the vision became concrete. The company went into research, and piled on to its existing know how. Two key areas that were developed were the bike developing technology and sport sponsoring. Still having close ties to the sport helped. "We learned a lot by having a very close partnership with many top level road racers and took all that consequently and strategically into our product development," Seidler added.
Focus is excited to have arrived at the top. "To enter a top level team is a logical step. To work together with Milram as a German team is a commitment and a challenge for us. We want to prove that we are able to offer top quality bikes for a reasonable price. Focus is well known in supporting German offspring racers and we will go on with this as one of our major goals. The partnership with Team Milram will be a catalyst for many other divisions."
Jörg Arenz, German cyclo-cross champion in 1998 and 1999, explained the attention to details in the development process. "For us it is very important that all the constructions are German engineering, done by our in-house engineers." Arenz is now the product manager at Focus. Very sophisticated geometries offer the right mix of agile handling and plush riding, mixed with light weight and stiffness. Team Milram is keen on riding one of the best and lightest bikes of the whole peloton. At the upcoming Eurobike the new team partners will show the first team products out of their product lines.
Most of the other partners of Milram are deriving from Germany as well. It will roll on super light and aerodynamic wheels from Lightweight. Lightweight belongs to Carbon Sports and comes from Friedrichshafen, Germany. Friedrichshafen will host the next Eurobike, starting tomorrow (September 4 - 7).
Continental tyres from Korbach is another German supplier of the team. Even SRAM has German roots. A big part of the development of the new RED high end components has been done in their facility in Schweinfurt. Other high end suppliers are Tacx from the Netherlands, Fizik and Rudy Project from Italy and FSA from the USA.