The Pezula Racing team was launched in Cong, County Mayo on Thursday 18th October. Over 100 guests attended the launch at the Lisloughrey Lodge hotel for the presentation of the UCI track registered team which will be led by Irish national road race champion David O'Loughlin.
The Irish team has been developed with David's uncle Declan who owns the Pezula company providing project and cost management services to the construction industry.
"The whole project started about six months ago," said Declan O'Loughlin: "I asked David if I could help him with some backing for his bid on the track for Olympic Selection. It eventually grew into a plan for a nine man track team registered with the UCI."
David O'Loughlin led the Irish national team challenge in the 2007 track world championships after qualifying through the UCI World Cup series in the men's points race and individual pursuit events.
O'Loughlin's new team will include former Navigators team-mate Ciarán Power, Ryan Connor, Martin Irvine, Paul Healion and Morgan Fox next year. The team will be based in Ireland but will be doing most of their track racing abroad as their home country does not yet have an indoor track. The team will also be competing on the road and will consider registering with the UCI as a continental team in the future.
"Our ultimate aim is to qualify for the Olympics - not just to qualify but to win a medal," said Declan O'Loughlin: "We want to give these guys the best chance possible. We are in for the long haul and we see this as a three to five-year plan."
O'Loughlin is quick to point out his road ambitions for the fledgling team. "On the road we hope to be participating in the Tour de Langkawi, FBD Rás, Philadelphia Week and the Premier Calendar series in the UK as well as the Tour of Ireland and Tour of Britain."
The team debuts in competitive action on the track on Saturday night competing in the Revolutions track meeting with a number of the team making the trip to Manchester.
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Laura Weislo has been with Cyclingnews since 2006 after making a switch from a career in science. As Managing Editor, she coordinates coverage for North American events and global news. As former elite-level road racer who dabbled in cyclo-cross and track, Laura has a passion for all three disciplines. When not working she likes to go camping and explore lesser traveled roads, paths and gravel tracks. Laura's specialises in covering doping, anti-doping, UCI governance and performing data analysis.