Could Wales have its first professional team in 2016?

Wales could have its own professional cycling team in 2016, with team managers boldly predicting it will one day support a Welsh rider through the Tour de France.

We Are Wales Pro Cycling is the brainchild of former professional Eifion Weinzweig, who was born in Bridgend, and Yann Dejan, and the team claims it will have the financial backing to start up next season.

The country has a strong history of producing cycling talent, with recent examples including Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe, as well as Olympic champion Nicole Cooke.

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“Our desire has always been to create something very special for the people of Wales, a team they can be proud to call their own,” said Weinzweig, who raced in France for UCK Vannes.

“We all know how passionate Welsh fans are about sport and WAW will give them another professional team to follow in what is a rapidly growing sport. The ultimate dream is to one day support a Welsh rider through to the finish of the Tour De France, but that is a long way in the future.

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The team is yet to announce any riders to its squad, but Weinzweig plans to create a legacy for home grown cyclists: “We want to provide a platform for the Welsh economy to attract global investment into the region as well as engaging with local communities in Wales. One of our key objectives is to develop a long-lasting legacy for young cyclists in Wales.”

Dejan has experience of coaching and directing professional cycling teams, having worked with the likes of UCK Vannes and Team Bretagne in recent years.