A British cycling team has literally put itself up for sale in a bid to continue competing this season.
Wearing cycling tops emblazoned with the legend “for sale”, members of Team Lacuna raced their first race of the Premier Calendar Series earlier this month and competed well against the teams with actual sponsors, giving the team hope that they can challenge this year.
Rob Orr and David Clarke formed the team in February of this year once sponsorship for the team for which they had signed to ride – Pedaltech-Cyclingnews-Jako – collapsed in mid-January. The collapse left a huge hole in the team budget for 2008 and effectively meant the end of the team.
With the team folding so close to the start of the season, the chances of finding another top-level team was remote, and so they set about forming their own team.
Orr said: “For Dave this was the second year in succession that a team had collapsed on the verge of the season, and so we felt we would be stronger if we stayed together.”
Along with Clarke as well as colleagues Richard Williamson and Daniel Smith, Orr has put together Team Lacuna (literally: something missing) for the new season – but what they need now is backing.
“One of the first people that I spoke to was Dan Ellmore at Impsport (a sports clothing specialist). I asked him if he would help us with some kit in order to race at the start of the season.
“I knew of Dan and obviously of Impsport as they are a top sports and cycling clothing brand and he very generously printed up some race clothing for us. The kit was put together with the intention of being an eye-catching temporary kit as we search for sponsors and that is why we decided to have “for sale” printed across the front.”
Impsport director Ellmore said: “We were pleased to help these guys after they lost their backing at the last minute. They are obviously professional in their outlook and I felt they deserved any support we could give them and the best clothing available!”
The newly kitted-out team are targeting the Premier Calendar series, the UCI category races in Great Britain and some UCI races in Europe, although many of these endeavours may prove difficult due to the financial implications.
Orr added: “The biggest obstacle for us at this current point in time is the finance of running a team, as the costs are quite substantial. The world is becoming more health conscious on a daily basis, and we feel that the medium of cycle sport is a perfect avenue for brand exposure. The representation of our sponsors and partners is of the uppermost importance to Lacuna Cycle Sport and in creating a UK based professional cycling team we are searching for partners and sponsors that hold the same ideals.”