ISRAEL START-UP NATION
ISRAEL START-UP NATION
When it took over Katusha's WorldTour licence, Israel Start-Up National also acquired the right to enter the Tour de France in 2020. Its first Grand Tour, the 2018 Giro d'Italia, started in Israel thanks to the intercession of one of the team owners, Sylvan Adams. The man from Quebec, who started cycling in his forties and is the son of Marcel Adams, a Romanian Holocaust survivor who emigrated to Canada and made his fortune in real estate, made aliyah (immigration of Jews from the diaspora to Israel) in 2015 and joined the two founders of the Cycling Academy Team, initially sponsored by Peter Sagan: Ron Baron, another billionaire in love with cycling, and Ran Margaliot, who raced for Saxo Bank–Tinkoff Bank in 2012 and was the first manager of the outfit, now known as Israel Start-up Nation after a stint as Israel Cycling Academy.
Kevin Lam, a start-up incubator (Reinvent.com) who also hails from Canada, became the third co-owner. The organisation sees itself as "an ambassador for Israel and peace on Earth". As well as taking part in the 2018 Giro and setting up a training centre for Israeli cyclists, it built an Olympic velodrome in Tel Aviv that doubles as the team's headquarters.
It has been a melting pot and taken part in races around the globe from its early days. Its star signings for the 2020 season were the German sprinter André Greipel, a man in search of redemption after his fiasco at Arkéa–Samsic, and the Irish climber Dan Martin, who got his mojo back with fourth place in the 2020 Vuelta. It scored a media coup when it signed Chris Froome, who has been working his way back up the ladder following a horrific crash in the 2019 Dauphiné.
17 : the number of nationalities that make up the 31-strong 2021 roster of Israel Start-Up Nation.
- Final victory0
- Stages victory0
- Yellow Jersey0
- Other race Won0
Overall wins: 0
Podium finishes: 0
Stage wins: 0
Secondary classification wins: 0
Yellow jerseys: 0
- 25 November 2014: Peter Sagan travels to Jerusalem to launch the Cycling Academy Team, the first Israel pro cycling outfit, which competed in Continental races in its first season in 2015 and joined the WorldTour in 2020.
- 31 August 2020: Frenchman Hugo Hofstetter posts Israel Start-Up Nation's best result in its first Tour de France with fourth place in Sisteron, right behind Caleb Ewan, Sam Bennett and Giacomo Nizzolo and ahead of Peter Sagan in fifth place.
- 20 September 2020: Guy Niv becomes the first Israeli rider to start (and finish) the Tour de France (139th).
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