Jack Bobridge, the world record holder in the individual pursuit, will return his focus to the track ahead of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, racing together with four other riders from the Australian endurance team as part the Budget Forklifts squad.
Luke Davison, Glenn O'Shea, Scott Sunderland and Mitchel Mulhern will also be a part of the team, which will focus on gold in the team pursuit in the Rio Olympic Games.
Bobridge has raced with the Belkin squad since the 2012 Olympic Games in London, where he, O'Shea, Rohan Dennis and Michael Hepburn took second to Great Britain in the team pursuit. Changing over to a domestic programme with a focus on the track for the next two seasons is "the best avenue to achieve my goal of winning gold at the Rio Olympics," Bobridge said. "I also aim to achieve some great results on the road along the way."
"It's really great that a team such as Budget Forklifts is going to back our men's track endurance program through to Rio. This is a first for an Australian team and I think it's really exciting for the track squad and also for Budget Forklifts. The partnership is going to boost the track endurance team and bring some great results for Budget Forklifts on the road."
A fresh squad of young Australian track racers claimed the gold medal in the team pursuit at the first World Cup in Guadalajara, but Tim Decker, Cycling Australia's Men's Track Endurance Coach, sought a team that could support the track riders through the season in addition to allowing them freedom to race on the track to help ensure the country is back on the top step in 2016.
"This is a group of guys we believe in and we're really proud to have taken on the responsibility of helping Australia achieve the ultimate success at the Olympics," Decker said.
"Kevin Tabotta (Cycling Australia's HPU Performance Director) and I have been working super hard behind the scenes researching and discussing with teams from World Tour, Pro Continental and Continental," Decker says.
"Budget Forklifts provides a professional environment for these five to work in. Even more impressive is the fact that they not only want to give them an opportunity to chase success on the road they want to work with Cycling Australia in its quest to win gold in Rio.
"We're really proud of this partnership and can't wait to get the 2015 season underway."
The 2015 Budget Forklifts team: Jack Bobridge, Luke Davison, Glenn O'Shea, Scott Sunderland, Mitchel Mulhern, Wesley Gough, Samuel Horgan, Kristian Juel, Samuel Witmitz, Tommy Nankervis, Myrom Simpson, Jake Kauffmann, Brodie Talbot, Michael Torckler, Brendan Canty, Josh Berry and Daniel Barry.