There's a new rider agency on the professional cycling scene, with the boxer Anthony Joshua launching a cycling arm of his 258MGT management company.
Joshua is one of one the biggest stars in global sport and his company has grown significantly since he set it up to handle his own commercial interests.
This week it was announced that it will incorporate a cycling division, named 258 Protégé and run by Jamie Barlow, who has split from Andrew McQuaid's Trinity agency.
Finn was the first transfer the company engineered, securing a high-profile first professional contract at UAE Team Emirates after the highly-rated 19-year-old had ridden for the U23 squad of their rivals, Jumbo-Visma. Niamh Fisher-Black already rides for the top-ranked Women's WorldTour team, SD Worx.
Also on the books of 258 Protégé are the South African Nicolas Dlamini, who rides for Qhubeka-NextHash, and Sarah Gigante, who herself has just completed a high-profile transfer from Team BikeExchange to Movistar for 2022.
The agency has also signed up two young British talents in the form of Leo Hayter – younger brother of Ineos Grenadiers rider Ethan Hayter – and Oscar Nilsson-Julien.
"We are in a unique position to disrupt the market and challenge the current shortfalls of the commercial elements of the sport and utilize the full support of the team 258MGT has built around AJ across legal, financial, PR and social media industry leaders," read a launch statement.
"Having identified and worked with some of the best young talent the past eight years, WorldTour, Women’s World Tour, Pro Continental [sic] and Development teams trust our opinion on talent. Outside of the cycling bubble we are the best connected commercial agency barring none.
"258 Protégé will work across all aspects of the sport including talent representation, contract negotiation, commercial endorsements, sponsor search and negotiation and corporate events."
The wide-ranging remit and desire to look 'outside the cycling bubble' follows the move by Joao Correia's Corso agency to partner with the Polaris company of football 'super-agent' Jorge Mendes.
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Deputy Editor - Europe. Patrick is an NCTJ-trained journalist who has seven years’ experience covering professional cycling. He has a modern languages degree from Durham University and has been able to put it to some use in what is a multi-lingual sport, with a particular focus on French and Spanish-speaking riders. After joining Cyclingnews as a staff writer on the back of work experience, Patrick became Features Editor in 2018 and oversaw significant growth in the site’s long-form and in-depth output. Since 2021 he has been Deputy Editor - Europe, taking more responsibility for the site’s content as a whole, while still writing and - despite a pandemic-induced hiatus - travelling to races around the world. Away from cycling, Patrick spends most of his time playing or watching other forms of sport - football, tennis, trail running, darts, to name a few, but he draws the line at rugby.