The Qhubeka team keeps moving forward
We are deeply saddened to confirm that our hopes of racing as a UCI WorldTour team in 2022 are over. This follows extensive global research, during this unprecedented time, to secure the long-term future of the team.
During the last few days, our last possibility to continue at this level could not be concluded, and therefore the decision was made to end Operation WorldTour on December 31, 2021.
It is an extremely disappointing time for our organization. As a team that from the start has strived to play an extremely progressive role in cycling through our partnership with the Qhubeka charity, highlighted by our unique goal-driven approach, not being able to continuing to do so in 2022 is a significant loss. to the world of cycling.
Our list of cycling successes has seen us reach incredible heights. Many will remember the astonishing achievements of Gerald Ciolek, Steve Cummings, Mark Cavendish, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Ben King, Omar Fraile, Kristian Sbaragli, Ben O’Connor, Giacomo Nizzolo, Victor Campenaerts and Mauro Schmid raising their delighted hand as they cross the line. arrival line – to celebrate our goal.
Equally important are the moments that saw Nic Dlamini and Daniel Teklehaimanot make history as they toured the Tour de France for us, highlighting the challenges African riders face just to have the opportunity to race in Europe as in the case of Negasi Haylu Aabreha, the inspiring group of young riders from the Khayelitsha club who traveled with us to the Grand Départ in Brussels, and of course the incredible Qhubeka Charity – to name a few. Our team has been a home for all and carried the hopes and dreams of a continent and far beyond.
A Qhubeka bicycle distribution ceremony remains one of the most incredible events one can attend. A bicycle that, in a single instant, completely illustrates the true value of a bicycle and the role it has in changing lives.
We would like to thank all of our fans for their incredible and unwavering support, and for the trust you place in us to be at the forefront of the evolution of our sport. For that we will be eternally grateful to you and so we hope you will continue to support us in the future as we now take the next step in our journey.
Make no mistake, this announcement is an announcement that weighs heavy but has more than ever invigorated and motivated us to rebuild and claim once again to race on the biggest stage in sport, and while ensuring that we continue to deliver a platform for African talents to progress at the highest level.
To this end, the Qhubeka team will continue to function as a UCI continental team in 2022, based in Italy, with our aim to return to the highest level in the near future. Our support for the Qhubeka charity is unwavering for which, to date, we have raised significant funds and raised awareness.
Further details will be communicated in due course.
Douglas Ryder – Team Leader
Thursday, I sent an internal message to our staff and our runners to tell them the news. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever done in my life. The responses have been so moving and encouraging.
It has given me such faith and conviction that what we have done here is truly unique; when you work in an environment that has a bigger purpose and has a positive impact on others, it doesn’t feel like work anymore.
We saw this spirit – Ubuntu – to gain a firm foothold this year and expand beyond our team into our fan base and the media; so brilliantly documented in Roller magazine after Victor Campenaerts’ stage victory at the Giro d’Italia.
We rose as an African team from South Africa, to include all of Africa; from road cycling to mountain biking to women’s cycling and finally focusing on training a road team registered in Africa on the Tour de France.
We have climbed the ranks from a continental team to a professional team winning Milan Sanremo, a landmark, in our first season to become a WorldTour team in the past six years. We have taken Africa forward in cycling, we have moved people through Qhubeka and we will continue our movement to make bikes change people’s lives. The fact that the World Championships are being held in Rwanda in 2025 is a testament to the fact that so many people are working together and believe in Africa’s potential.
Not having an African team in the top two rows of men’s cycling is an important moment and a topic we all need to reflect on, especially in light of the current situation in the world and in sport. We had some incredible interactions in our search for a title partner to secure our future, but unfortunately we were unable to secure a deal on time.
But the Qhubeka team keeps moving forward, our continental team will be racing and we have other exciting projects and ideas that will allow us to continue using our platform to change lives with bikes. Our work with the Qhubeka charity has truly inspired us and will continue to do so. It should be a story that inspires all cycling and beyond, and we want you to be a part of our journey.
To all of our past, current and future partners, I want to thank you for your faith and belief in what we want to accomplish. One thing I can absolutely guarantee is that we have always done our best, and you have our commitment to do so in the future.
To all our staff and riders, past and present, thank you for your dedication and support, see you soon.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of the Qhubeka NextHash team.
About the Qhubeka NextHash team
The Qhubeka NextHash team is a goal-driven high performance team fighting to win on the world’s biggest stage, to inspire hope and create opportunity. Founded in 2007, the Qhubeka NextHash team (formerly NTT Pro Cycling) became the first African cycling team to obtain a UCI WorldTour license, in 2016.
We had our first major victory in 2013 when Gerald Ciolek won Milan-San Remo, one of the five monuments of cycling. We have competed in six Tour de France and won 7 stage victories, with Mark Cavendish wearing the coveted Yellow Jersey at the 2016 Tour de France.
We are a multicultural and diverse team with bases in South Africa, the Netherlands and Italy. There are 19 nationalities represented on our World Tour and Continental Feeder team rosters. Our focus on the development of African cycling has enabled more than 55 riders from the African continent to be offered the opportunity to race on the world stage since the inception of the team.
We run to help people get ahead with cycling through our relationship with Qhubeka Charity. Through our work with Qhubeka, we have helped distribute over 30,000 bikes to communities across South Africa.
Qhubeka is a charity that gets people moving with bikes. People gain bicycles through our programs, improving their access to schools, clinics and jobs.
A bicycle is a tool that helps people travel faster, farther, and carry more. In the face of extreme and persistent poverty, bikes can change lives by helping tackle socio-economic challenges at the most basic level – helping people get to where they need to go.