Cofidis (cycling team)

Cofidis Solutions Crédits (UCI team code: COF) is a French professional road bicycle racing team sponsored by a money-lending company, Cofidis. It was started in 1996 by Cyrille Guimard, the former manager of Bernard Hinault, Greg LeMond and Laurent Fignon of the Renault–Elf–Gitane team of the 1980s. The team's sponsor has supported the team despite repeated problems such as doping scandals. After it was part of the UCI ProTour for the ProTour's first five seasons, from 2010 the team competed as a UCI Professional Continental team. The team joined the UCI World Tour for the 2020 season.

Cofidis Solutions Crédits
Team information
Founded1997 (1997)
StatusUCI Professional Continental (2010–2019)
UCI WorldTeam (2005–2009, 2020–)
BicyclesKuota (–2019)
De Rosa (2020–2022)
Look (2009–2014, 2023–)
WebsiteTeam home page
Key personnel
General managerCédric Vasseur
Team name history
Current season

History edit

Team Cofidis team vehicles in 2021

Cyrille Guimard started the team in 1996 with backing from François Migraine, the chief executive of Cofidis. An early acquisition was Lance Armstrong, formerly of Motorola Cycling Team. Armstrong was dropped[1] because of his cancer and another American, Bobby Julich, became leader for stage races. Julich's place in the top three of the 1998 Tour de France brought the team to the spotlight, and Frank Vandenbroucke brought further results in classics. That year, Cofidis won the team classification in the Tour.

Years of drought followed as Julich and Vandenbroucke left the team. Vandenbroucke's Belgian compatriots, Nico Mattan, Chris Peers, Peter Farazijn, and Jo Planckaert, stayed on but were criticised for inconsistent performances. Cofidis, on the demand of Migraine, began paying riders by results, judged by the points they won in a season-long competition run by the Union Cycliste Internationale. Belgian riders criticised the policy, saying it would lead riders to ride conservatively to be sure of good placings at the finish. They debated the issue publicly with the manager, Alain Bondue, and left.

David Millar raised the team's profile by winning the prologue of the 2000 Tour de France, taking leadership of the team. Millar criticized the points system and the team relented.

David Moncoutie riding for Cofidis at the 2002 Tour de France.

In 2004 Cofidis had three world champions – Igor Astarloa on the road, David Millar in the individual time trial and Laurent Gané on the track. However, a doping scandal involving Millar and other riders led them to stop racing until it was resolved. Astarloa left the team. The investigation decided that doping was by individual riders and that the team was not involved. David Millar has since suggested otherwise, in a strongly worded interview with the BBC.[2] In May 2004 the team announced that Bondue and team doctor Jean-Jacques Menuet had both resigned.[3] The team then returned to competition for the 2004 Tour de France, in which Stuart O'Grady and David Moncoutié won stages, Moncoutié's on Bastille Day.

Following the doping scandals, the team appointed Éric Boyer as team manager in 2005.[4] Moncoutié won on Bastille day again in the 2005 Tour de France – the only French stage win – with O'Grady's help. A new signing, Sylvain Chavanel failed to win a stage or to make a strong impression.

O'Grady and Matthew White left in 2006. Cédric Vasseur – often the road captain – also left. An early victory in Classic Haribo by Arnaud Coyot showed the team still had firepower. Cofidis won the first stage of the 2006 Tour de France with Jimmy Casper, in a chaotic sprint.

For 2007 the team signed Belgians Nick Nuyens and Kevin De Weert from Quick-Step–Innergetic.

On 25 July 2007 Cofidis rider Cristian Moreni failed his doping test after the 11th stage of the Tour de France. His blood contained traces of testosterone. Moreni acknowledged doping. The team withdrew from the Tour.[5]

In 2008 the team enjoyed the most successful season of Boyer's time as manager, with Chavanel winning Dwars door Vlaanderen and Brabantse Pijl and Chavanel and Samuel Dumoulin both taking stage wins in that year's Tour de France.[4]

Cofidis rider Alexandre Usov at the 2009 Tour Down Under

On 29 September 2009, the UCI ProTour decided not to renew the ProTour licenses of Cofidis and Bbox Bouygues Telecom, due to poor results. [6]

In 2012, the team received a wildcard invitation to the Tour de France, along with three other French-registered teams.[7] A few days before the start of the race, Boyer was sacked as manager of the team, with Migraine blaming him for poor results: he was replaced by former Festina, Astana and FDJ–BigMat directeur sportif Yvon Sanquer.[4][8]

On 10 July 2012, the first rest day in the 2012 Tour de France, French police raided the Cofidis team hotel, arresting French rider Rémy Di Gregorio[9] on suspicion of doping.[10]

Nacer Bouhanni in his Cofidis jersey at the 2015 Tour de France

For the 2015 season the team announced it had signed 2014 Giro d'Italia points classification winner, Nacer Bouhanni, along with Dominique Rollin, Geoffrey Soupe and Steve Chainel.[11]

After a 2017 season during which the team only took 13 wins, in October of that year the team announced that Sanquer had been sacked, and that he would be replaced as manager by former Cofidis rider Vasseur.[8]

The team returned to UCI WorldTour status in the 2020 season, and the team will using De Rosa bikes beginning from the 2020 season, ending their contract with Kuota.[12]

Starting with the 2023 season the team will be riding Look bicycles.[13]

Team roster edit

As of 6 January 2023.[14]
Rider Date of birth
  Piet Allegaert (BEL) (1995-01-20) 20 January 1995 (age 28)
  François Bidard (FRA) (1992-03-12) 12 March 1992 (age 31)
  André Carvalho (POR) (1997-10-31) 31 October 1997 (age 26)
  Thomas Champion (FRA) (1999-09-08) 8 September 1999 (age 24)
  Davide Cimolai (ITA) (1989-08-13) 13 August 1989 (age 34)
  Simone Consonni (ITA) (1994-09-12) 12 September 1994 (age 29)
  Bryan Coquard (FRA) (1992-04-25) 25 April 1992 (age 31)
  Alexandre Delettre (FRA) (1997-10-25) 25 October 1997 (age 26)
  Rubén Fernández (ESP) (1991-03-01) 1 March 1991 (age 32)
  Eddy Finé (FRA) (1997-11-20) 20 November 1997 (age 26)
  Simon Geschke (GER) (1986-03-13) 13 March 1986 (age 37)
  Jesús Herrada (ESP) (1990-07-26) 26 July 1990 (age 33)
  José Herrada (ESP) (1985-10-01) 1 October 1985 (age 38)
  Ion Izagirre (ESP) (1989-02-04) 4 February 1989 (age 34)
  Wesley Kreder (NED) (1990-11-04) 4 November 1990 (age 33)
Rider Date of birth
  Victor Lafay (FRA) (1996-01-17) 17 January 1996 (age 27)
  Jonathan Lastra (ESP) (1993-06-03) 3 June 1993 (age 30)
  Axel Mariault (FRA) (1998-06-07) 7 June 1998 (age 25)
  Guillaume Martin (FRA) (1993-06-09) 9 June 1993 (age 30)
  Christophe Noppe (BEL) (1994-11-29) 29 November 1994 (age 29)
  Anthony Perez (FRA) (1991-04-22) 22 April 1991 (age 32)
  Pierre-Luc Périchon (FRA) (1987-01-04) 4 January 1987 (age 36)
  Alexis Renard (FRA) (1999-06-01) 1 June 1999 (age 24)
  Rémy Rochas (FRA) (1996-05-18) 18 May 1996 (age 27)
  Benjamin Thomas (FRA) (1995-09-12) 12 September 1995 (age 28)
  Hugo Toumire (FRA) (2001-10-05) 5 October 2001 (age 22)
  Jelle Wallays (BEL) (1989-05-11) 11 May 1989 (age 34)
  Max Walscheid (GER) (1993-06-13) 13 June 1993 (age 30)
  Harrison Wood (GBR) (2000-06-14) 14 June 2000 (age 23)
  Axel Zingle (FRA) (1998-12-18) 18 December 1998 (age 24)

Major wins edit

National champions edit

  Luxembourgish Time Trial, Stève Fogen
  Estonian Road Race, Janek Tombak
  Australian Road Race, Stuart O'Grady
  Estonian Road Race, Janek Tombak
  French Time Trial, Sylvain Chavanel
  French Time Trial, Sylvain Chavanel
  French Time Trial, Sylvain Chavanel
  Estonian Road Race, Rein Taaramäe
  Estonian Time Trial, Rein Taaramäe
  Estonian Road Race, Kalle Kriit
  Estonian Time Trial, Rein Taaramäe
  Latvian Road Race, Aleksejs Saramotins
  Estonian Time Trial, Rein Taaramäe
  Estonian Road Race, Rein Taaramäe
  French U23 Cyclo-cross, Clément Venturini
  Estonian Time Trial, Gert Jõeäär
  Estonian Time Trial, Gert Jõeäär
  Estonian Road Race, Gert Jõeäär
  Estonian Time Trial, Gert Jõeäär
  French Cyclo-cross, Clément Venturini
  Eritrean Time Trial, Daniel Teklehaimanot
  Eritrean Road Race, Natnael Berhane

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ It's Not About the Bike by Lance Armstrong
  2. ^ "Millar recalls EPO doping trauma". BBC News. 3 July 2010.
  3. ^ Fotheringham, Alasdair (4 May 2004). "Cycling: Manager and doctor quit troubled Cofidis". Retrieved 28 October 2017.
  4. ^ a b c "Cofidis sacks manager Boyer". 26 June 2012. Retrieved 28 October 2017.
  5. ^ With cycling in crisis, Tour de France organizers revamp race for 2008 – Cycling – Yahoo! Sports Archived March 14, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Новости велоспорта – Командам Cofidis и BBox Bouygues Telecom отказано в продлении лицензии ПроТура". Archived from the original on 2011-10-09. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
  7. ^ "Argos-Shimano receives Tour de France wildcard invitation". Cycling News. 6 April 2012. Retrieved 5 July 2012.
  8. ^ a b "Cofidis replaces team manager after poor results in 2017". 26 October 2017. Retrieved 28 October 2017.
  9. ^ "Politie valt hotel Cofidis binnen, di Grégorio gearresteerd".
  10. ^ "Cofidis rider arrested as police raid team hotel | SBS World News". Archived from the original on 2012-07-10.
  11. ^ "Latest news from the world of cycling | Cycling Weekly".
  12. ^ Farrand, Stephen (22 November 2019). "Viviani back in the saddle and preparing for 2020 with Cofidis". Cycling News. Retrieved 4 December 2019.
  13. ^ Daniel Ostanek (2022-10-26). "Cofidis switch back to Look bikes for 2023". Retrieved 2023-01-07.
  14. ^ "Cofidis". UCI. Retrieved 6 January 2023.

External links edit