Three WorldTour teams have concurrently announced new bike sponsorship deals for 2021, with Jumbo-Visma, Mitchelton-Scott and Team Sunweb all finding new partnerships with Cervélo, Bianchi, and Scott, respectively.
In the first of the three changes, Bianchi have opted to end their seven-year spell with Jumbo-Visma team and will join forces with Mitchelton. Both the men's Jumbo-Visma squad and the newly-formed women's iteration will ride Cervélo bikes in 2021.
Cervélo has worked with Team Sunweb since 2019, coinciding with the launch of the radical-looking S5 aero bike. That partnership now comes to a close as Team Sunweb have signed a deal that will see both men's and women's teams riding Scott bikes for 2021 and beyond.
Scott's nine-year agreement with GreenEDGE Cycling will end, and the Mitchelton team will ride Bianchi's celeste bikes. With it will come a name change for the Australian outfit, although the details of this are yet to be announced.
As of January 1, 2021, Jumbo-Visma riders Wout van Aert, Primoz Roglic and Tom Dumoulin will have the choice of Cervelo's S5 aero bike, the lighter-weight R5, the P5 time trial bike, as well as the recently-released Caledonia, a race bike built for the cobbles.
Mitchelton's Simon Yates and new signing Michael Matthews will likely be given the same or an even wider choice of bikes that afforded Jumbo-Visma's 2020 season, which included the Oltre XR4 and the Aquila time trial bike. Bianchi will also provide its new, lightweight Specialissima, although it's yet to be confirmed whether it will be the disc-equipped model which was recently added to the UCI's list of approved frames and forks.
It has been confirmed that Team Sunweb will be given the Scott Addict RC and the new Foil for road races, alongside the Plasma time trial bike.
"After nine years with GreenEdge Cycling / Mitchelton-SCOTT, we believe it was time for a change and we found in Team Sunweb the ideal partner for a new start,’’ explained Pascal Ducrot, vice president of Scott Sports.
All three teams have been using Shimano groupsets for the 2020 season, so it's unlikely there will be any change on that front, however, the announcements do open up the rim vs disc brakes debate.
Despite Jumbo-Visma's continued use of rim brakes in 2020, this is widely rumoured to be due to the weight of the disc-brake-equipped Oltre XR4. Conversely, while similar weight concerns have been raised about Cervelo's disc-brake-equipped models, the S5 and R5 are effectively committed to discs.
Sunweb's Søren Kragh Andersen and Marc Hirschi have both been seen riding a rim-brake-equipped R5 that is no longer available to the public, so it remains to be seen exactly what the Jumbo-Visma team will choose on race days.
Interestingly, Mitchelton-Scott have been committed to disc brakes throughout 2020 but are yet to confirm which technology they will adopt into 2021. The only foregone conclusion is that Sunweb's mixed usage will become a full commitment to disc brakes, such is offered by Scott's range.
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