Tour de France winning duo Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas have shared their thoughts as chemical company Ineos have officially taken over Team Sky.
The team marked their transformation from Sky to Team Ineos during a launch event held in Yorkshire on Wednesday (May 1).
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Winner of six Grand Tours Froome joined team boss Sir Dave Brailsford and Ineos founder Sir Jim Ratcliffe at The Fountain Inn in Linton, as Thomas raced at the Tour de Romandie in Switzerland.
Froome said: “I’m personally hugely grateful to Ineos for coming in, especially at such short notice. It’s an incredible boost for the team.
“It allows everyone to focus on the remainder of the season and winning some of the biggest races in the world.
Team Ineos unveiled their new colours at the launch event, as well as their new bikes.
The new colours will be debuted at the Tour de Yorkshire on Thursday (May 2).
Thomas added: “Some of us have been together right since the start in 2010, so it’s really good that the team can continue with the same values, the same structure, but under a different name now.
“Speaking to the guys at Ineos, I know they’re really excited to keep developing the team, which is the main thing.
“The mentality is to keep improving and pushing forward. It’s exciting times for sure.”
Sky has ended its professional cycling sponsorship after a decade in the sport, making way for chemical company Ineos to step in.
At the end of 2018, the team announced its main backer would be leaving cycling as Brailsford began the search for a new sponsor.
Sky were due to pull out at the end of the 2019 season, but Ineos stepped in to take over sooner.
Froome said: “There would have been some sadness with the news at the end of 2018, but together we can now look towards an exciting future as Team Ineos.
“I think our fans will naturally be delighted that Ineos are on board. I’m sure they’ll be with us every step of the way.
“We’re all looking forward to riding in the new colours at the Tour de Yorkshire this week.”
Thomas added: “We get a lot of support back in the UK and all over the world really.
“Hopefully we can continue to perform well in races and do the fans proud.
“When there’s new ownership, I wouldn’t say there’s more pressure but it gives everyone a new impetus.
“That change keeps everyone pushing forward.”