Italian Pro-Continental team Wilier Triestina-Southeast will welcome onboard Selle Italia as a co-naming rights sponsor from the 2017 season. Wilier Triestina became the naming rights sponsor of the team in April, and announced in August its deal would remain in place for 2017. It is unsure if the Southeast company will remain involved with the team from 2017.
Filippo Pozzato and Jakub Mareczko will spearhead the team roster for 2017 just as the Italian did in 2016.
Run by Angelo Citracca, the team was created under the ISD–Neri name in 2009 and has since enjoyed title sponsorship from Farnese Vini, Neri Sottoli, Alé, and Venezuela. Selle Italia was also a naming rights sponsor of the team in 2012 and 2013 and will return in 2017.
The news was made public in La Gazzetta dello Sport, with Selle Italia vice-president Riccardo Bigolin explaining the relationship with the Gastaldello family, who rebuilt and now run the Willier brand, helped seal the seal.
"The greatest satisfaction, as a sponsor is so far linked to the exploits of Jose Rujano in the Giro," Bigolin said of the Venezuelan climber who was third at the 2005 Giro, won the KOM and combativity classifications and stage 19 to to Sestriere while riding for Colombia–Selle Italia and hopes provides inspiration for 2017.
In August, Wilier CEO Andrea Gastaldello explained the mission statement for the team was to become the most well known in Italy with Lampre-Merida changing from an Italian to Chinese WorldTour license. The addition of Selle Italia as a naming rights sponsor ensures recognition for the team as it is well known and used cycling brand.
"Our mission is to continue show off the quality of the Italian cycling around the world, both Italian riders and the Italian cycling industry," said Andrea Gastaldello at the time. "We believe that an Italian project like ours can reach important goals, including becoming one of the most-liked brands amongst the tifosi. And cycling fans."
Wilier Triestina-Southeast enjoyed 18 victories across the 2016 season with Mareczko its stand out rider, winning 12 races and claiming bronze in the Worlds U23 road race. However, there was a low light for team with Samuele Conti testing positive and banned through to 2020.
For the 2017 season, Colombian climber Miguel Eduardo Florez Lopez (Boyacá Raza de Campeones) has been confirmed as a new signing with little change expected for the roster overall.
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