Drops transform into Le Col Wahoo team in 2022
British team aims to acquire Women's WorldTeam status in 2023
Complete with new sponsors, the Le Col Wahoo team, formerly known as DROPS Le Col s/b Tempur officially launches today. Its goals and management will remain the same with Tom and Bob Varney, the original founders of DROPS Le Col, continuing as directors, marshalling the team’s ambitions to eventually join the UCI Women’s WorldTour's top tier of teams.
“We’re delighted to see both Le Col and Wahoo come together to back the team’s development and move us towards our goal of being the best in the world,” Tom Varney said.
“We believe both Le Col and Wahoo are leaders of their respective fields and their support will be integral to the team and its riders getting to the World Tour in 2023.”
Le Col will triple their existing investment in the team, and offer their aerodynamic expertise to improve elite performance.
“For 2022 we are taking our partnership and support of the team to the next level,” said Yanto Barker, the founder of Le Col.
“We have been developing some of the most advanced cycling kit possible and with the help of key riders in the team ensuring that this technology enables our riders to ride faster and further. Together with Wahoo we will aim to ensure our backing not only supports the team, but inspires the cycling community and encourages more women to race bikes.”
Wahoo, meanwhile, are marking their first foray into the headline sponsorship of a professional cycling team, showcasing their commitment to women’s cycling.
Wahoo’s CEO, Mike Saturnia, explained their involvement. “In parallel with the original mission of the Drops professional cycling team, Wahoo’s purpose is to build the better athlete in all of us, and nowhere is that better displayed than with this partnership,” he said.
“Women’s racing provides some of the most exciting bike racing for viewers and it deserves a much bigger platform to exhibit the riders talents and skills. We aim to aid the team in qualifying for the Tour de France Femmes in 2022 and share their ambition of becoming a WorldTour team in 2023. Together we can bring women’s cycling to a larger audience and inspire new generations of female cyclists.”
The new structures at Le Col Wahoo will aim to build upon the successes that its predecessor, DROPS Le Col s/b Tempur, enjoyed last season. Most notably, they supported Joss Lowden as she broke the UCI Women’s Hour Record in September. Lowden also took overall victory at the Tour de Feminin-Krásná Lípa, while Emilie Moberg secured an impressive fourth place at Scheldeprijs. With the injection of new sponsorship and the continuing development of young riders such as April Tacey, Le Col Wahoo will be hopeful of similar results in 2022.
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Issy Ronald has just graduated from the London School of Economics where she studied for an undergraduate and masters degree in History and International Relations. Since doing an internship at Procycling magazine, she has written reports for races like the Tour of Britain, Bretagne Classic and World Championships, as well as news items, recaps of the general classification at the Grand Tours and some features for Cyclingnews. Away from cycling, she enjoys reading, attempting to bake, going to the theatre and watching a probably unhealthy amount of live sport.