Team MTN-Qhubeka : Ciolek verlängert

Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung is pleased to announce the contract extension of Gerald Ciolek. The team captain has revealed his satisfaction in this environment and has opted to stay with Africa’s first Professional Continental team through 2015. “We’re delighted that Gerald has extended with us,” team principal, Douglas Ryder. “He’s made a huge impact on our team not only with his results but also with mentoring the younger riders. They’re excited to have a captain that is down to earth and takes the time to share his experience. We now look forward to increasing our race program as we build towards our first Grand Tour.” Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung races to raise awareness for the Qhubeka foundation, an organisation raising funds to mobilise people on bicycles in Africa. Racing for a higher purpose was one of the main attractions for Ciolek. The 26 year old attracted the attention of several teams after he took the biggest victory of his career in March, Milan Sanremo. “I always said I would like to stay with this team,” Ciolek said. “As a professional cyclist you always look for other options but in the end I am really happy that I can go forward with this team. When I first found out about the team last year, I discovered a great team with great character and performing on a high level and I really like this. “I think we had a really good year and now we want to build to go to an even better level next year. We are very ambitious as a team and want to grow and become the first African team to race the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.” After making its WorldTour debut in 2013 and finishing on the podium of Milan Sanremo and several top tens in Tirreno-Adriatico, the team has made clear its ambitions to race a Grand Tour in 2014. “We have a very competitive team for a Grand Tour already. If we get all the guys into good shape I think we have the potential to go to a three-week stage race and do well. Not just the experienced guys but even the younger guys. It’s amazing working with the younger riders and how they follow the advice of the more experienced riders 100%. It gives us, the more experienced riders, confidence when they follow our advice,” Ciolek concluded. Serame Taukobong, MTN’s Chief Marketing Officer added, “We’re very excited that a world class rider like Gerald has extended his stay with Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung. As an organisation we are always looking for new and innovative ways to improve and the team mimics that. In Ciolek we’ve acquired one of the best riders, a true ambassador for our brand. With our support we have managed to bring him into an African environment and he has flourished which shows how the continent is growing.” To date, the team boasts eleven victories for the season. More announcements regarding plans for 2014 will follow in the weeks to come.

(left to right): Gerald Ciolek, Serame Taukobong, Douglas Ryder.

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