Chris Froome: ‘This is a special team – we plan to be together in 2020’

The four-time Tour de France winner has reacted to the news that Sky will end its cycling sponsorship

Chris Froome has reacted to the news that Sky will end its sponsorship at the end of next season.

Team Sky will be left without a backer when their parent company pulls out in 2019 unless a new sponsor can be found.

Froome, a four-time Tour de France winner, said the team plan to stay together into 2020.

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In a statement posted on Twitter, the 33-year-old said: “I can’t predict the future but I can say this with absolute certainty – this is a really special team.

“We plan to be together in 2020 if at all possible and we will be doing everything we can to make that happen – in different colours, with a new partner but with the same values, focus and desire to win.”

Team Sky announced on Wednesday morning that Sky would be pulling out, having backed the team since its inception in 2010.

Since launching nine years ago, the team took Britain’s first Tour de France victory with Sir Bradley Wiggins in 2012 and racked up eight Grand Tour victories.

Froome is the team’s current Grand Tour leader, with wins in all three of the major tours.

He added: “First off a massive thank you to Sky.

“They have been brilliant partners and it’s been an incredible journey we have shared together.

“They have helped me personally every step of the way and I will always be grateful for their support.

“And we are not finished yet by any means. Everyone at Team Sky has got big ambitions for 2019 and this news has made us more determined than ever to make them happen.”

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Sky’s involvement with cycling came into doubt earlier this year when company was bought by American communication giant Comcast.

The company’s chairman James Murdoch, a driving force in Sky’s cycling sponsorship, departed shortly after.

Team Sky insiders said it was business as usual after the takeover, and highlighted CEO Darroch’s support for the team.

Froome added: “And finally to the fans, your support has always mattered most to us and the messages we have all received today have meant a lot.

“We look forward to seeing you on the road in January.”

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