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“They were working on this Tinkoff thing day in, day out. Every time I spoke to them they couldn't really give me any more information [about a possible contract ], as basically they hadn’t been thinking about it too much,&q...

Photo: Unipublic / Graham Watson

MATTHEW BRAMMEIER

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS

NICOLAS ROCHE

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS

OLEG TINKOV

NEWS
29.11.2013 @ 15:21 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

When it was first reported that Oleg Tinkov had bought Team Saxo Bank from team owner Bjarne Riis, both parties were quick to deny the rumours but the Russian businessman confirmed that he had a number of potential projects on the table. Now riders Matthew Brammeier and Nicolas Roche confirm that negotiations are actually going on and that a solution is expected in the near future.

 

While Russian businessman Oleg Tinkov will end his sponsorship of Team Saxo-Tinkoff at the end of 2013, he has made it clear that he has no intention of leaving the cycling world. On the contrary, he plans to increase his engagement as he hopes to become the owner of a team in either 2014 or 2015.

 

Tinkov was in advanced negotiations with the Cannondale team but they ultimately broke down when the American bike manufacturer decided to up its commitment to the team. Instead, La Gazzetta dello Sport reported that Tinkov had bought Team Saxo-Tinkoff from its owner Bjarne Riis for almost seven million euro but both parties denied the rumours.

 

At the time, Tinkov spokesman Stefano Feltrin told Velonation that they was considering several potential projects.

 

“After the end of our negotiation with Cannondale we have received several proposals - from existing teams and new projects - and we are working on them,” he said then. “Oleg’s relationship with Riis has been always ongoing - as he is, among other things, still his current sponsor.”

 

Last week Feltrin confirmed that Tinkov had narrowed down the number of potential projects to just a short list and said that a final decision was expected in the first week of December. However, he refused to confirm that the possibility of buying Team Saxo Bank was still open.

 

Irish riders Matthews Brammeier and Nicolas Roche now confirm that the parties are in negotiations and based on their comments, it seems that both parties are very keen to turn a future cooperation between the parties into reality. The news comes shortly after it was observed that Tinkov actually attended the recent team training camp in Gran Canaria.

 

Brammeier had spoken with the team about  possibly joining them for the 2014 season. While that never happened as he instead joined the Synergy Baku team, he reveals that the team was working hard on the Tinkov negotiations.

 

“They were working on this Tinkoff thing day in, day out,” he told Velonation. “Every time I spoke to them they couldn't really give me any more information [about a possible contract ], as basically they hadn’t been thinking about it too much. I think they were full-on trying to sort the Tinkoff negotiations out. I am not sure whether it is going to happen or not, I don’t know. I know they are definitely talking to him.”

Current team rider Nicolas Roche attended the training camp and he confirms that the parties were working on the project.

 

“At the moment no-one knows. It is still a big question mark for everyone here,” he told Velonation. “We have talked about it during the first few days in the camp. We were told to be patient, to wait and see, and so we will wait and see.”

 

Tinkov has been a co-sponsor of the team since July 2012 but decided to end his sponsorship shortly after this year's Tour.

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