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by Dane Cash
June 9, 2020
Photography by Cor Vos
For the second time in three years, CCC team manager Jim Ochowicz is looking for a new title sponsor.
Ochowicz provided an update to his squad’s situation in a statement on Monday, confirming that CCC would be departing from its position as title sponsor, as has widely been reported.
“Looking ahead to the 2021 season, CCC will no longer be the title sponsor so we are now actively looking for a new title sponsor,” Ochowicz said. “We are in an unprecedented time but we are confident there are companies that want to invest in cycling, especially given the global rise in popularity of bike riding in recent months.”
Polish footwear brand CCC arrived as a sponsor just in the nick of time to take over the title sponsorship of the former BMC team from the start of 2019 after the Swiss bike brand was in that role for a decade. While a number of the team’s biggest stars (including Richie Porte and Rohan Dennis) headed elsewhere in the transition, CCC kept Greg Van Avermaet as its Classics centerpiece and went on to bolster its roster with the likes of Ilnur Zakarin and Matteo Trentin last transfer season.
CCC was signed on to stick with the team through 2021, but financial difficulties amid the coronavirus crisis led the brand to reconsider its commitment. In April, it was announced that the team would be cutting salaries and laying off several staff members, while media reports have for weeks pointed to the impending announcement that CCC would be pulling out one year early as the title sponsor, with Monday’s statement finally confirming that news.
Given the financial concerns facing countless companies across the globe right now, the task of replacing CCC on short notice will certainly be a challenge. That said, Ochowicz is no stranger to the business of finding sponsors after managing pro teams across five decades through his stints at the 7-Eleven/Motorola and BMC/CCC organizations.
Ochowicz struck an optimistic note in his statement, noting that “Under the Continuum Sports ownership and license, we have grown from a US Continental Team in 2007 to one of the biggest WorldTour teams in the peloton in recent years and we have every intention of continuing under new title sponsorship.”
For now, the CCC squad is largely focused on the resumption of racing. According to the statement, the team’s service course in Belgium will open up this month, with altitude training camps likely on the schedule soon. CCC also said that it would release its riders’ updated programs for the 2020 season in the near future.