Israel-Premier Tech seek to 'improve the world' as well as winning bike races

Co-owner Ron Baron says cycling team aims to 'continue to put Israel on the map'

Israel-Premier Tech
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Israel-Premier Tech have lofty ambitions to improve the world as well as winning bike races in 2022.

At the team's launch on Thursday, co-owner Sylvan Adams said that the team was drawing on the "ancient Jewish imperative of Tikkun olam, which is trying to improve the world".

Adams said that the aim was to be "more than a cycling team", and that the team has a social mission.

"I want this team to be a model, an exemplary model in our sport and in all sport," he explained. "In trying to improve things and build bridges as we race around the globe. To build bridges, make new friendships and compete in the spirit, the highest spirit of sportsmanship and openness. 

"While we try to succeed, in winning races and bringing newer better, higher attention to our beautiful programme."

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The Israel-based team have new co-sponsors in Premier Tech, a Canadian based company. Adams said that it was a "real honour and a privilege to bring them on board", and a "big step in the evolution of our young team".

"I believe it validates a lot of the effort that we've been putting into this wonderful team and will help us take it to the next level and become a more winning team and a more successful team while at the same time, continuing to, to be more than a cycling team, we operate a number of social activities and we have a social mission."

Jean Bélanger, Premier Tech's president and CEO, told the media that while the initial deal was for four years, he hoped it would be the start of something longer.

"This partnership is for at least the next four years, but four years is only the beginning. This team obviously has a solid foundation in Israel but it also has with Canada. We have five out of the six WorldTour Canadian riders and we have Canadians in the management. 

"It may have taken a bit more time for the partnership to come together but we now have a structure that will enable to continue long into the future."

Premier Tech were previously co-sponsors of the Astana team, but withdrew over disagreements over its direction, before moving to the team formerly known as Israel Start-Up Nation.

Ron Baron, the other co-owner of the team, said that "we are only getting started still", adding that "we definitely have the best team we've ever had on the elite team and the development programme".

On his goals for 2022, Baron explained: "We would love to see one of the young riders on the continental squad sign up... we would be so happy to see it. We have eight Israelis but also many nationalities and they are super talented, and they should join the elite team. 

"That would be a great achievement if that happens. We want to see more young riders like Itamar Einhorn win races and enjoy this great group of professional riders. 

"We want to continue to put Israel on the map internationally and in cycling, like we did until now with the sport diplomacy."

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