Lawson Craddock also sent contract termination letter after bike breach

Craddock riding a non-sponsor-compliant Giant bike at the weekend (Image credit: Instagram)

Lawson Craddock has become the second EF-Education Nippo rider to face a possible contract termination after he was photographed on a bike other than his Cannnodale trade team machine. 

The American was at a Mellow Jonny’s event in Texas at the weekend, where he was photographed on a Giant road bike. He shared these photos on social media before deleting the posts.

Although Craddock has signed for Team BikeExchange for next year, the Australian team have not yet announced that Giant will supply their bikes. They are currently under contract with Bianchi, although they are expected to announce the deal with Giant in the new year. 

Cyclingnews understands that Craddock was supplied the bike via Giant in the US and not through his 2022 trade team, who would have at least covered up the bike brand’s logos in case such a photo opportunity occurred. 

Cyclingnews contacted BikeExhcange for a response but the team declined to comment. EF-Education Nippo did confirm that they "treat all riders the same" and that they are "working to find a good resolution for everyone''. The team later confirmed that an agreement with Craddock had been found.

"The team has come to an amicable agreement with Lawson Craddock regarding his riding of a non-team bike at a recent public event, and Craddock has reached out to our partner Cannondale and the team to apologize. We look back on our six seasons with Lawson fondly and wish him the best in the future," the team told Cyclingnews.

This response comes in the wake of Sergio Higuita – another departing EF rider – being videoed at a Gran Fondo in Colombia on a Bora-Hansgrohe Specialized bike. The Colombian was sent a letter of intent to terminate his contract earlier this week before issuing a public apology

The team later confirmed that Higuita would not be fired but they declined to answer whether the rider has been fined or docked any wages for the final two months of his current contract.

Riders are not contractually allowed to ride in any kit or use any equipment that goes against their team's sponsorship agreements.

There have been exceptions, with riders allowed to use their future bikes at training camps and while training at home but those instances usually involve agreements or written permission from their current teams. Bikes are often white-labelled for this purpose. 

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Daniel Benson was the Editor in Chief at between 2008 and 2022. Based in the UK, he joined the Cyclingnews team in 2008 as the site's first UK-based Managing Editor. In that time, he reported on over a dozen editions of the Tour de France, several World Championships, the Tour Down Under, Spring Classics, and the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the help of the excellent editorial team, he ran the coverage on Cyclingnews and has interviewed leading figures in the sport including UCI Presidents and Tour de France winners.