Fernando Alonso reportedly secured Dubai-based sponsor for five years
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Monday, December 23, 2013

Fernando Alonso reportedly secured Dubai-based sponsor for five years

by Ben Atkins at 6:56 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Formula 1 driver’s team set to debut in 2015; eyeing on Peter Sagan and Tony Martin

fernando alonsoFernando Alonso has secured a five-year deal for his WorldTour team, with a Dubai-based sponsor, Spanish newspaper ABC reports. The Formula 1 driver, whose team is currently going under the name of “Fernando Alonso Cycling Team” (FACT) abandoned negotiations to purchase the WorldTour licence of folding Spanish team Euskaltel-Euskadi in late September, but has reportedly complete the initial paperwork for a 2015 application with the International Cycling Union (UCI).

The team has been advised by former riders José “Kiko” Garcia and Jose Luis “Chechu” Rubiera, and has travelled the World in search of sponsors.

Alonso, along with manager and business partner Luis Garcia Abad, has reportedly used the Formula 1 season timetable to negotiate with potential investors in India, Singapore and Abu Dhabi, using a Power Point presentation to show the team’s potential squad of multinational riders. ABC reports that Google and Fly Emirates are among the leading companies to have been wooed, but the reportedly secured sponsor has not been named.

The team is said to be implementing a “zero-tolerance” anti-doping policy, and will not be hiring any soigneur, doctor, directeur sportif or rider that has been involved in any previous doping case. The presence of Rubiera, as ABC points out, would appear to contradict this, however, as the 40-year-old was a domestique of Lance Armstrong’s for several Tours de France, and was mentioned in the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) “reasoned decision” into the American’s lifetime suspension.

The policy also appears to close the door in Alonso’s friend Alberto Contador (Saxo-Tinkoff), who was suspended for two - mostly backdated - years after having failed a test for traces of clenbuterol at the 2010 Tour de France.

With the folding of several teams this year, including WorldTour squads Euskaltel-Euskadi and Vacansoleil-DCM, many riders are still without teams for 2014, and several were forced to step down to a lower level. This means that Alonso should not have a problem recruiting for 2015, but ABC reports that the former F1 World champion is eyeing some of the hottest properties in the peloton, in the shape of Slovakian champion Peter Sagan and World time trial champion Tony Martin.

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