Dutch team expected to unveil new sponsor and colours before the Tour de France
Team Blanco is expected to officially announce it will become Team Belkin at a special media event in the Netherlands on Monday.
The team has sent out invitations to a media event in the Media Park Hilversum, south-east of Amsterdam. The invitation says: "Join us on 24th June as we unveil the future of … pro cycling team."
"Hear everything about the future of the Blanco Pro Cycling Team and our Tour de France strategy"
Team manager Richard Plugge is expected to confirm Belkin as the team's sponsor after reports emerged that a two and half year sponsorship deal was agreed to at the end of May.
The Dutch team is expected to swap its blue and white colours for Belkin's green, black, grey and white, with the new Belkin icon, a dot man design that signifies People Inspired Products (PIP) also likely to figure on the jersey.
Cyclingnews understands that a website and Twitter account for Team Belkin have already been created.
The Dutch team has been without a title sponsor since Rabobank announced last winter that it was ending its backing. This year's team budget is still being paid by the bank but the team took up the Blanco name after Rabobank did not want its name linked with professional cycling due to a long series of doping revelations in the Netherlands and the impact of the Lance Armstrong USADA investigation.
Belkin was founded in a garage in southern California in 1983 and has grown to be a privately held company with more than 1,200 employees in 21 countries. It describes its products as ranging from “wireless home networking and entertainment, to mobile accessories, energy management, and an extensive range of cables.” It has a European base near Schiphol airport in the Netherlands.
Blanco named Bauke Mollema and not Robert Gesink, as team leader for the Tour de France on Tuesday after he finished second in the Tour de Suisse. Sprinters Mark Renshaw and Theo Bos missed out on places as the team targets a top ten place on general classification.
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