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INEOS to take over Team Sky

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Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s chemicals firm are reaching for the Sky with their latest acquisition.

Team Sky will become Team INEOS to reflect their new owner with the new team's launch set for the Tour de Yorkshire on the 2nd May
(Image via Team Sky)

INEOS have agreed the sale of the Team Sky cycling team with Sky and 21st Century Fox. From 1st May this year the company will become the team’s new sponsor and sole owner, with the name changed to Team INEOS.

Sky have owned the team for nine years, during which time they’ve won eight Grand Tours with riders such as Chris Froome, Bradley Wiggins and Geraint Thomas.

INEOS have already stated their intention to “continue to fund the current team in full, honouring all existing commitments to riders, staff and partners.”

The launch of the new team will take place at the Tour de Yorkshire on the 2nd of May.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe, Chairman and Chief Executive of INEOS, and Britain’s richest man, said:

“Cycling is a great endurance and tactical sport that is gaining ever more popularity around the world. Equally, cycling continues to mushroom for the general public as it is seen to be good for fitness and health, together with easing congestion and pollution in city environments. INEO is delighted to take on the responsibility of running such a professional team.”

Team Sky was initially launched in January 2010, and has won 327 victories since, including six of the past seven editions of the Tour de France. But in December last year, the broadcaster announced they were selling their interest in the team. For the riders, nine years was Sky’s limit.

“We are please that the team’s future has been secured under new ownership. This brings to a close Sky’s decade-long involvement with cycling, which has created unprecedented success and inspired millions more people to cycle regularly,” said Jeremy Darroch, Sky Group CEO.

“I’d like to thank all members of Team Sky, past and present, for their contribution to our journey together. We wish the team and INEOS all the best for the future and look forward to watching the next chapter in the story.”

Team Principal Sir Dave Brailsford added: “Today’s announcement is great news for the team, for cycling fans and for the sport more widely. It ends the uncertainty around the team and the speed with which it has happened represents a huge vote of confidence in our future.

“In Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS, I know that we have found the right partner whose vision, passion and pioneering spirit can lead us to even greater success on and off the bike. It heralds the start of a hugely exciting new chapter for us all as Team INEOS. I would like to personally thank Jeremy Darroch, who over a decade ago had the vision to back us when others thought we were crazy. His support for the team through thick and thin has been remarkable and everyone at Team Sky thanks him for all he has done for our sport.”

Ratcliffe has previously purchased the football club FC Lausanne-Sport, has invested £110m in Ben Ainslie’s Americas Cup team and has been linked with a £2 billion bid to purchase Chelsea FC from Roman Abramovich.

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