Unfortunately CanAm Cycling, the management company running Floyd’s Pro Cycling, was unable to secure a title sponsor for 2020 and so the team will cease operations at the end of this year.
I’ll begin this announcement by repeating what’s been said all year: Floyd Landis supported our team at a time when North American road racing needed it and when he could have easily used that money to support the growth of Floyd’s of Leadville. His decision to be the title sponsor of our team was in part an act of loyalty to Gord Fraser and a sincere wish to help young riders on our team. Throughout the season, Floyd was incredibly busy with Floyd’s of Leadville’s many projects but he still made time to visit the team. He took us out to dinner, had a few laughs and went back to work. His focus for the time being has moved on from road racing and the title sponsorship of our team was perhaps a final gesture before turning his full attention to his business. Every single one of us involved with this team was so lucky to meet Floyd at this moment in his life and we wish everyone at Floyd’s of Leadville nothing but success.
I also want to offer a special nod to Roger Worthington. He has done more for cycling in North America than most people know. He has supported races such as the Dana Point Grand Prix and more recently the Cascades Classic, but check out the Worthy Brewing website. Look at all the community activities, local musicians and celestial gatherings that flow through that place. There is a bigger vision of Oregon’s place on the planet and cycling is merely integrated within that. It takes a striking combination of toughness, street smarts and heart to keep projects like Worthy Brewing going. It also takes good beer so if you’re ever in Bend, Oregon… you know what to do.
Roger welcomed our team into his home and they had a blast at the Cascades Classic. Later, we proudly raced at the Tour of Utah as Worthy Brewing. Like Floyd, Roger would show up, ride with the guys a few times then take off. He had work to do. It’s really hard to run a road racing team these days, but with guys like Floyd and Roger supporting us it’s clear we were spoiled.
We were definitely spoiled by Leo Incolligno and Biemme. They made us the Worthy Brewing kit needed for Utah and provided amazing service consistently responding to the suggestions of our riders. Edwin Bull at Van Dessel gave riders the bikes needed for us to dip our toes into gravel and mtb. Edwin worked with our head mechanic to ensure we had the right bikes in the right place throughout the year. This level of support helped create the best internal culture of any team that I’ve run. The team culture had a lot to do with Gord Fraser’s leadership, but also the rest of our staff–including Michelle Paiement, Jen Agan, Richard Knutson, Sara Pearse, Alex Laursen and our medical advisor Dr Michael Roshon. We were a Continental team, aka Division 3, but the level of care that our riders received was incredible. Thank you to all our sponsors and staff and congrats on a great 2019.
Of all the great moments this year, and with 34 wins and 3 national champions we had a lot to choose from, the one that sticks out for me was Johnny Clarke’s win in Taiwan. Johnny brings informed leadership to any team lucky enough to have him on board. He is able to share knowledge in ways that make those around him better. That skill can often place him in a supporting role. It was therefore great to see Johnny take home the yellow jersey from Taiwan. It affirmed he was a leader who knew how to win, could walk the walk, and it set the tone for the rest of the year. Shortly after, we were off and running with Travis McCabe winning a bunch sprint in Langkawi by 50 metres after the leadout cracked the field.
This team would never have happened without the help, advice and vision of Kevin Field at Cycling Canada. Matt Jeffries at Cycling Canada has also provided crucial support at key times to help us achieve our goals. Louis Barbeau and Pascal Choquette of the FQSC have helped the team with integrated projects and provided resources, coaching and guidance for all of our Quebec-based riders. I could go on and name hundreds of people that pitched in this year but I’ll stop by mentioning Brian Hodes and VeloImages. His photography and sense of aesthetics have helped shape the look of our team every year.
Lastly, I want to thank all the riders who made 2019 memorable on and off the bike. This team was unique in that it had 4-5 different kinds of leaders who somehow all got along by deferring or stepping up at the right time. And speaking of leaders, I’m not going to thank Gord Fraser here. One day soon Gord and I will sit down over beer and I’ll thank him for his friendship and let him know that his knowledge of so many aspects of the sport has helped guide me for the last 6 years. Perhaps we’ll talk about 2019–and maybe even other cycling-related projects that are yet to come. I’d work with Gord any day. In the meantime, Floyd’s Pro Cycling had a good run but unfortunately, it’s time to move on.