National champion Rob Hayles will have to decide in the next couple of weeks whether to stay with Halfords Bikehut or accept an offer from Rapha-Condor-Recycling.
Rapha’s team manager John Herety is believed to have made Hayles an offer, but the 35-year-old is waiting to see whether the retail company Halfords agrees to fund a proposal for an expanded team in 2009.
This season Hayles and Tom Southam rode in the orange and black Halfords colours as part of the sponsorship deal that saw the retailer back Nicole Cooke and the women’s team.
However, Cycling Weekly understands the Halfords women’s team will disband, with Cooke moving to a top team and the rest of the squad continuing to race together but as Great Britain.
The women’s squad will be largely unaffected because they never actually raced as Halfords in overseas events.
British Cycling’s Dave Brailsford asked Shane Sutton to put together a proposal for a bigger men’s team for next season, which could be built around Hayles and Ed Clancy.
Clancy has raced for Landbouwkrediet this season. Rapha are also thought to be interested in the team pursuit star.
Plowman Craven’s Simon Richardson is also on Rapha’s hit list.