Patrick Lefevere: “2016 – new year, same motivation”
Once again, we had an extraordinary year for the team. In 2015, for the fourth year in a row we were the winningest team in the World Tour, with 56 victories racked up to take the team's tally to more than 500 victories since its inception in 2003.
These numbers make us proud of our work and the work of a staff that is always competent and attentive, which has taken the team to the next level. In fact, it's no coincidence that we managed to win with 15 different riders in 17 different countries. The team really raised the bar in 2015. It's more balanced. However, the most impressive aspect of our 2015 was the consistency of our results, our presence in the higher echelons of the classifications. In fact, our athletes made it to the second step of the podium no less than 41 times, and scored 28 third places. Not counting the infinite number of top 10 placings. We were constant and present. And this makes us proud.
In 2016 a new chapter will be written in our history, and we are really looking forward to it. I really like the team. I witnessed a nice atmosphere at our first retreat in Denia and I'm sure that the vibe and the team will grow even more. We have 30 riders on the roster from 13 different countries, with an average age of just 27. De Plus will also be the youngest rider in the World Tour.
We have all the prerequisites to have another great year.
The new arrivals have been well integrated. Dan Martin is a shoe-in for his races. He's a complete rider that any team would like to have. Kittel is on the right path to returning to his 2013 and 2014 level, when he caught the public's attention, and he can count on an experienced man like Richeze. Gaviria is a talent who we can cultivate in due time. Contreras, De Plus and Martinelli are young riders with different experiences, but with excellent possibilities for growth and success in the near future. Jungels is a rider whose limits we still haven't found out.
Next to them is a proven team that knows the meaning of "Team Work" and which has come into its own year after year. We will be emphasizing this identity this year with the launch of a new hashtag, #WayToRide, which symbolizes the way we interpret cycling.
It's going to be another special year, which we hope will also bring satisfaction to all you fans of our team. In 2016 we will strive to stay even more in touch, keeping you updated and including you more and more in our activities.
Best wishes to you and your families for a fantastic year!