Enevos pulls out of sponsorship deal with RadioShack-Nissan
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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Enevos pulls out of sponsorship deal with RadioShack-Nissan

by Ben Atkins at 5:42 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Fränk Schleck pulling out of the Tour de France final straw for Luxembourg energy company

radioshack-nissanThere were more woes for RadioShack-Nissan today, as Luxembourg-based energy company Enovos cancelled its sponsorship deal with the team. The company came on board, amid much fanfare, in February of last year, when the team was called Leopard Trek, but has declared itself dissatisfied with the current season, since the merger with RadioShack.

Last season was a successful one for Leopard Trek, with the pick of the results being Andy and Fränk Schleck’s second and third places in the Tour de France; it has been events off the bike this year however, as internal wrangling between riders and management, reports of non-payment of salaries, and team manager Johan Bruyneel the subject of charges from the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) over alleged doping practices during his years working with Lance Armstrong.

It was the withdrawal of Fränk Schleck from the Tour de France, after he tested positive for specified substance Xipamide.

“As part of its partnership with the Luxembourg cycling team Leopard Trek, then RadioShack-Nissan-Trek, Enovos wishes to express its satisfaction with the way things went in 2011,” reads a press release from the company. “It transpired that with the sponsorship of the Leopard Trek team in 2011 gave a very satisfactory level visibility, branding and communications for the Group Enovos. Additionally, results were at the level expected.

“Unfortunately, the 2012 season has not brought the desired results,” it continues. “Considering only the sporting angle, this is part of the risk of sponsorship. However, the image that the RadioShack-Nissan-Trek team has given this year is by no means in line with the image that Enovos wants to communicate. There have been too many negatives since the beginning of the year. Finally the withdrawal of Fränk Schleck from the 2012 Tour de France, following an abnormal result of a doping control, led Enovos to reconsider its partnership with RadioShack-Nissan-Trek.

“Therefore, the sponsorship agreement is terminated by Enovos with effect from 1 August 2012,” it concludes. “Enovos strongly deplores the events of recent months. However, as a socially responsible company, Enovos does not wish to continue this partnership, as the values ​​representing the image of Enovos are not compatible with the affairs developing around RadioShack-Nissan-Trek.”

While Enovos is a relatively minor sponsor of the Luxembourg-registered team, following reports of various financial issues, the withdrawal of its funding will be far from welcome. The possible further ramifications for the future of the team could be far more serious at this stage of the season however; the team is rumoured to be haemorrhaging its stars at the end of the year, with both Schlecks, Jens Voigt, and Jakob Fuglsang either suspected or confirmed to be on their way out.

With Bruyneel likely to be facing a USADA arbitration panel in November, and now a sponsor very publicly walking away, the team’s presence in the 2013 International Cycling Union (UCI) WorldTour is beginning to look highly unlikely.


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