American cyclo-crosser Jonathan Page has secured funding from former sponsor and owner of Planet Bike, Bob Downs, who is working on the details of a new sponsorship agreement for the 2011-12 season. Downs hopes to continue financially supporting Page, without the aid of Planet Bike, by running a summer cyclo-cross training centre.
"He is committed to being the sponsor for next season," said Page. "Right now I'm still riding under Planet Bike and later on we will figure out what the name of my team will be. Our vision is to commit to running some cyclo-cross camps. Cyclo-cross is his passion."
"Bob owns land outside Madison and is thinking of buying a little more to make a cyclo-cross training centre in order to run those camps out of the Madison area," he added. "I would be running the program, doing technique work and talking about training. We will bring in some trainers, sport scientists and mechanics to help run the cyclo-cross camp."
Page is no stranger to leading cyclo-cross training sessions, having provided a clinic prior to the Planet Bike Cup event in Madison two years ago. He also ran a cyclo-cross clinic prior to Star Crossed and Rad Racing events in Oregon last September.
"It was fun for me and a big turn out," Page said. "I never imagined myself being much of a teacher but I can do a pretty good job of teaching cyclo-cross, so that's nice to know."
In November, Page announced that Downs would sell Planet Bike and effectively end all sponsorship for the cyclo-cross team, including himself and US National Champion Katie Compton. However, Downs approached Page with a new offer following his 12th place at the UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships held on January 30 in St-Wendel, Germany.
"It's not just a sponsorship, it's like being involved with a family," Page said. "Bob is a very good friend to me and my family."
Page will continue his equipment sponsorship agreements with Blue Bicycles, Enve wheels and Lazer helmets. He will continue his search for additional sponsorship to add to his new financial arrangement with Downs. "I am free to find other sponsors as well and it helps to be riding fairly well right now to hopefully attract some more," Page said.
Page and his wife Cori welcomed their third child into the family, daughter Pearl Wendel Page, the day after the world championships in local St-Wendel hospital. In honor of his daughter, Page will wear a pink accented helmet and handlebar tape for the remainder of the season.
"I'm going to celebrate my new daughter Pearl," Page said. "I was day dreaming on a training ride a couple of weeks ago and thought that would be a cute way of celebrating her arrival."