The US/Swiss WorldTour team is splitting with Pearl Izumi for the Assos deal. The agreement brings the famous Swiss clothing manufacturer back to top level racing.
Assos, based over the border from Italy in Swiss canton Ticino, supports the Swiss Cycling Federation. Fabian Cancellara used its kit to race to the Olympic time trial title in Rio de Janeiro this August. It had been rumoured to be dressing Team Sky, instead, Castelli will do so.
BMC Racing representatives would not comment ahead of this article being published. Insiders, however, confirmed the deal is done.
The team also inked a deal recently with another Swiss company, watch manufacturer Tag Heuer. The team announced the sponsorship news on October 8.
BMC Racing and Assos should announce the new clothing contract at its media day on December 12, in Denia, Spain.
Assos is replacing American manufacturer Pearl Izumi, which clothed the team from 2013 to 2016. Beforehand, George Hincapie’s company, Hincapie Sportswear provided the team’s kit.
Prior to the BMC Racing deal, Assos worked with several stars both on the road and the mountain bike trails. It sponsored teams like Renault-Elf and Toshiba.
Its Textile Laboratory Lugano should already be at work for its WorldTour debut. There along Lake Lugano, tax-haven home for stars like Alberto Contador and Vincenzo Nibali, it develops fabrics for Assos’s projects.
It could use both its Advanced Ergonomic Pattern Design and Elastic Interface Technology for the 2017 BMC Racing team.
Belgian Van Avermaet could have gold trim on his red and black kit in honour of his Olympic road race win. BMC Racing will support him in the classics. Australian Porte will lead the Tour de France team, wearing Assos in the biggest race of the year.
Depending on the deal with Pearl Izumi, BMC Racing’s 28 riders could already start wearing Assos in December at the team camp.
Its first official race of the year will be the Tour Down Under in Australia, starting on January 14.