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Mitchelton-Scott renamed as Manuela Fundación with new sponsor

Joe Robinson
12 Jun 2020

New kit and new name for Australian WorldTour team

Australian WorldTour team Mitchelton-Scott will be renamed Manuela Fundación for the remainder of the 2020 season as the not-for-profit company was announced as the team's new main sponsor.

Team manager Gerry Ryan confirmed the change in team name will coincide with the Spanish charity's launch on 4th October while also hinting this could be a long term deal for the team.

In the team's eight-year history, Ryan has battled to establish main sponsors for the team, including the likes of gas company Orica and Swiss bike brand Scott.

Most recently, Ryan has used his own spa, winery and hotel business Mitchelton to name the team while looking for an alternative backer. In this new project, Ryan hopes he has found the answer for the team.

'After an unsettling and uncertain period, particularly in recent months, we are thrilled to have the support of Mr Francisco Huertas and the Manuela Fundación to ensure our future in 2021 and beyond,' explained Ryan.

'We have always believed in our product and values as a team for perspective partners, but the significance of this long-term deal is not lost on us, especially considering the recent hardships of not only the cycling world and sports industry but the wider world’s health and economic climate.'

Huertas, who fronts the little-known new sponsor, is looking forward to supporting the team with immediate effect.

'It's been an intense period of hard work between Manuela Fundación sports director Emilio Rodríguez and Mitchelton-Scott general manager Shayne Bannan. It’s an incredible opportunity and an honour to be able to reach this agreement,' said Huertas.

'We want to thank Gerry Ryan for all of his work and contribution so far, which has taken the team to its best. Now we will continue to boost this legacy and give great joy to the fans of this sport.'

The new sponsor should hopefully provide some financial security to Ryan's team following substantial pay cuts that were handed to riders and staff as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Reports suggest that some leading riders have taken up to 70% pay cuts as a temporary measure.

However, questions have already been raised about new backer Huertas who was previously reported to have missed sponsorship payments to the Granada football team. 

For spectators of the sport, the biggest change will be kit as the team changes its colour scheme from navy and gold to navy and pink.

A tidy jersey bereft of too much design work, it certainly reminds us of the Lampre kits of old.