Rapha and Team Sky to end partnership after 2016 season
Four-year deal which has seen two Tour de France wins to come to an end
Rapha have announced they will end their partnership with Team Sky at the end of the 2016, ending a four-year association with the British WorldTour squad.
The London-based company’s CEO and founder, Simon Mottram, sent an open letter to all customers to announce the decision and underline Rapha’s commitment to Team Sky through the final 14 months of the contract.
“After reflection and discussion, both Rapha and Team Sky have decided not to renew our partnership beyond the current four-year deal, which concludes at the end of the 2016 season,” said Mottram.
“For the next year Rapha will focus on the research and development projects that are already in progress with the team. With several special new products due to be released in 2016, we now look forward to an exciting final season with Team Sky and celebrating the partnership in style.”
Those R&D projects will include the Pro Team Aerosuit, Shadow Jersey (Rapha’s take on the Gabba-esque weatherproof jersey) and the Extreme Weather Jacket.
Rapha say they are making the announcement early to allow the team to pursue new sponsors, while ‘several’ new racing projects and partnerships will be announced in the new year. The firm’s current deal with Team Wiggins is unaffected by the Team Sky announcement.
“Going forward Rapha will continue to find partnerships that serve and connect with our customers wherever they are from, and across the many levels and disciplines of this beautiful sport,” added Mottram.
“The success of our cycle clubs and the RCC (Rapha Cycling Club) gives us the confidence to keep moving forwards, to try new ventures and trust our instincts.
“From 2017 we will continue to support racing in many ways, especially locally, but we will also focus on new geographies, partnerships and categories. We will be announcing news on these exciting developments soon.”
Rapha’s partnership with Team Sky began ahead of the 2013 season, when Chris Froome won the Tour de France for the first time, followed by a second triumph this year.
“Rapha has been a part of Team Sky’s countless achievements since , including two Tour de France victories and success on all types of terrain and in all conditions,” said Mottram.
“Together, we have redefined performance and style in the peloton, both on and off the bike. It’s been an amazing ride so far and the success of the partnership has been beyond expectations.”
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