Canada's top professional cycling team, Spidertech, announced today that it will "postpone" racing for the 2013 season, choosing to focus on gathering enough corporate sponsorship for a WorldTour bid in 2014 with an aim at racing in the Tour de France.
"We're stepping away from continental competition in order to focus our efforts on gaining UCI WorldTour status," said owner Steve Bauer in a press release. "We have made the decision to focus our efforts entirely on making the jump to the WorldTour in 2014 and have determined that we need to acquire additional financial partnerships to reach this goal."
Cyclingnews has so far been unable to reach Bauer regarding how this impacts riders such as Timmy Duggan, who have signed contracts with the team, but the Team Spidertech Twitter account contains unattributed posts claiming, "We wouldn't have signed contracts if we'd been planning this all along. We've found spots for almost all of the guys so far."
Further posts address suspicions that the timing of this announcement, falling just after USADA's release of its reasoned decision on Lance Armstrong, was somehow related to the doping scandal.
"Nothing to do with the USADA investigation. It was a strategic decision to put the organization in the best position for 2014."