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Riis ends association with Tinkoff Bank

Cycling News
July 25, 2013, 09:09,
July 25, 2013, 11:40
Second Edition Cycling News, Thursday, July 25, 2013
Contador hands over the new Saxo-Tinkoff jersey

Contador hands over the new Saxo-Tinkoff jersey

  • Contador hands over the new Saxo-Tinkoff jersey
  • Oleg Tinkov was overjoyed with the team's victory
  • Bjarne Riis has attracted a new sponsor to his squad.

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Seeks new co-sponsor for 2014

Tinkoff Bank will no longer be a co-sponsor of Saxo-Tinkoff after this season, the team has announced. Team owner Bjarne Riis cited a lack of “common views” and disagreements as to how the team should be run. He will now start looking for a new co-sponsor for the coming season.

"During the course of our extensive negotiations with Tinkoff Bank it has become clear that we are unable to settle on common views and the ideas that are necessary for our partnership to grow and be successful for both parties beyond 2013. Most importantly, we disagree on how the team should be run,” Riis said in team press release.

“For all of these reasons, I have decided to explore other possibilities and end the negotiations with Tinkoff Bank. I would like to thank Oleg Tinkov personally and Tinkoff Bank for their great contribution to the team. I look forward to working with Tinkoff Bank for the rest of 2013, and will also take this opportunity to wish them all the best for the future.”

Saxo Bank had already announced that it would stay with the team through 2014, “to help ensure the future of the team.” It has been with the team since 2008. Earlier this week, the bank admitted that there were difficulties with their negotiations with Oleg Tinkov for the coming year.

"We already have a strong portfolio of partners onboard, and our key partner Saxo Bank have told us that they are ready to continue their sponsorship in 2014 and are willing to help us find a solution that benefit all parties involved. So I'm confident we will be able to continue to field a strong and competitive team in the years to come," Bjarne Riis added.

Oleg Tinkov had in fact indicated on Twitter a few days ago that he would no longer sponsor the team, after earlier suggesting that he would take over sponsorship. “@RealHSPplayer i am leaving saxo, you dont have to)- if you have $$ wchich is doubt-spondor riis- he needs 6 million” [sic].

Since the end of the Tour de France, where Saxo-Tinkoff captain Alberto Contador finished off the podium in fourth place, Tinkov has criticized the Spaniard via Twitter. “Conta performance wasn't good. He need to change many things in his preparation and be more PRO. Will he do that? That's the question...” and later, “His salary doesn't match his performance. Too rich and isn't hungry, that's my opinion, and I deserve it. He must work harder”.

He later claimed that “I am pushing him to be better! Maybe I am helping him, will see”.

Saxo Bank will help with search

Saxo Bank communications director  Kasper Elbjørn told that the bank wanted to “confirm that we ourselves continue our sponsorship in 2014.”  He added that bank director Lars Seier “has also told Bjarne Riis that we'd love to be helpful in finding a new sponsor.”

His only comment on Tinkoff ending the sponsorship was, “I would say that we have had a professional relationship with Oleg Tinkov. But it is of course clear that we do things in a slightly different way.”

JURE71 More than 1 year ago
"Most importantly, we disagree on how the team should be run" - read in to that what you will ...
Ripper More than 1 year ago
OT is OTT and really, every time he get's more involved with cycling, there's more drama and not of the good kind, at least for cycling. He also does not really give a krap about doping, just results.
del1962 More than 1 year ago
Tyler Hamilton said this of Tinkov "Already at the first team meeting, where we sat in a conference room, Oleg Tinkov said: 'I do not care what you do, just do not get caught'. He is not a man to be trusted leading a cycling team, so we should be glad he is gone
JURE71 More than 1 year ago
Mind you Riis isn't exactly Mother Theresa now is he ...
yuppie More than 1 year ago
But I doubt he's stupid enough to take too big a risk in the current climate. Hopefully he gets desperate enough to take onboard a sponsor that demands transparency.
martinvickers More than 1 year ago
Bizarrely, it's just possible that Riis, given what has happened in the sport, is less willing to have doping than tinkov - Tinkov clearly doesn't seem to give a ****
martinvickers More than 1 year ago
And I well know that Riis was all too willing to have it!
del1962 More than 1 year ago
Yep Tyler has some interesting things to say about Riis aswell
Le Baroudeur More than 1 year ago
Tyler's inner twin spins some good yarns too, as if one attention seeking Tyler wasn't enough.
JURE71 More than 1 year ago
His Chimeara you mean???
Latvian More than 1 year ago
he is not gone, there will be a new team tinkoff credit systems
Aapjes More than 1 year ago
"He need to change many things in his preparation and be more PRO" This is code for: he needs to use (more) doping.
JURE71 More than 1 year ago
Yep - thats how I read it, and given that he doesn't seem to have the killer kick anymore I'd say the 'plasticiser' incident spooked him...
VeloGirl More than 1 year ago
That is exactly how I read that when I saw his tweet. Could not believe he said that.
chucko More than 1 year ago
How embarrassing that someone who is the head of a major company like Tinkov Tweets about his riders and remarks on business dealings in this way. Sounds like Tinkov is one of these nightmare people that expects something for nothing. Riis I suspect is better off without the sponsorship! Perhaps Tinkov could link up with Astana - sounds like a good fit to me ...
Tideplay1 More than 1 year ago
Riis should also leave. He committed the unpardonable sin of helping/assisting?enabling his riders to dope. Away
Cance > TheRest More than 1 year ago
He owns the team, you know??
Ripper More than 1 year ago
He could, and then there would be a fair # of cyclists without a job. This is the thing and it's a difficult one - in an ideal world, things could be done one way. But we don't live in an ideal world and the unintended consequences of certain actions need to be more carefully considered. Perhaps Riis should be gone, I'm just more conflicted in my opinion on it.
chucko More than 1 year ago
Tideplay - if Riis should go so should over half of the current team owners and the staff that work with them. I think it's fair to say that generally speaking doping has been rife in cycling - probably for the majority of time the sport has been organised ie) The TDF etc has been organised.
JamesJohnson More than 1 year ago
This sounds similar to the way Roman Abramovich treats Chelsea and its managers. The "give me results or your fired" mentality doesn't really work.
simo1733 More than 1 year ago
Oh yeah Chelsea haven't won anything and they were so successfull until Abramovich came.
Le Baroudeur More than 1 year ago
Considering the relative budgets before and after... Many would argue they were indeed relatively more successfull before.
Dr_Stav More than 1 year ago
Having a rider finish 4th to some very strong riders regardless of previous wins is still a commendable result. The cameras spent more time watching Contador than Joaquim Rodríguez so Tinkov had far greater air time than Katusha. Apart from the podium photos, Saxo-Tinkov publicity would have peaked over the past three weeks for the general public, and bar winning, they won't have lost out. If Tinkov is trying to push for more results, better off without him.
Tanline More than 1 year ago
Even Astana thinks that Mr. Tinkov is a bit too much.....that says enough.....
Lamby101 More than 1 year ago
How is Riis still allowed to run a cycling team?
lifedebunked More than 1 year ago
Answers on a postcard to Pat McQuaid...
Le Baroudeur More than 1 year ago
The same way anybody else is allowed too.. His team fulfils all the sporting, ethical, and financial requirements laid down by the sport. Simple really. :)
Micachin Z More than 1 year ago
Because he is so good.
Ryo Hazuki More than 1 year ago
if you don't know any better you'd think tinkoffs twitter is either hacked or a joke account.
rshimizu12 More than 1 year ago
Tinkov has been expecting to much from AC. He already knew that Froome has been having stellar season. He may dissatisfied with Contador's results in the TDF. But one cannot argue that Alberto has not been working hard.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He is having a bad year,just like Andy,Thor, Gilbert and many others...he is not a machine simple human! Good Lord.
Micachin Z More than 1 year ago
Bravo Bjarni!! Stay away from "russian" money.