Team Sky has signed Peter Sagan’s newborn son Marlon to a professional cycling contract. According to several sources, the team decided not to wait to get the World Champion’s baby into their development program.
“Marlon will be a massive talent in 16 years,” said David Brailsford, general manager of the British squad. “He’s got the genetics, no question — he’s going to be very fast. We might as well get him sooner rather than later.”
Terms of the contract were not announced. However, it’s believed that initially, Marlon will simply wear Team Sky branded diapers and baby clothes, along with Sky-themed bedding. There is also the possibility of a custom stroller, now in development with Pinarello, the team’s bike supplier.
With a huge budget that dwarfs most of the other WorldTour squads, Sky has the resources to sign most of the young talent coming up through the U23 and U16 ranks. However, the signing of a baby is a first for a team that has won four of the last editions of the Tour de France.
“We like to take a bold approach. If you want to win, you get the best riders the second they’re available,” said Brailsford. “We’ve already talked to Peter about running some basic tests on Marlon, just to get the basics — a quick VO2 max will help us down the road.”
While the signing was hailed with excitement at Team Sky, at least one observer was critical of the move. “It’s bizarre. I think this is actually crazy,” said Marc Madiot, team manager of FDJ. “The UCI must put a stop to this baby nonsense.”
While it will be some years before Marlon Sagan gets his first bike, Brailsford already has plans for the young man. “We’ve invited him to our first training camp with the lads. It’s a great experience, it’s tremendous education. He can meet Chris and Geraint, get him acclimated,” said Brailsford. “Then when we do the Tenerife camp, we’ll try to get him up to altitude. Now is the time, in these early formative years, to develop his lungs.”
For Marlon’s parents, Peter and Katarína Sagan, the contract with Sky was a surprise. “For sure, yes, it was funny, you know?” said Sagan. “Sky called me, I thought it was joke but no they are serious. We make a little bank account for Marlon.”
Sky has already sent the team’s sports nutritionist to visit with the family and suggest some dietary modifications once Marlon begins eating solid food. “We want Marlon to get off to a fast start. Obviously, he’s not racing, he’s just a newborn, but we want him to eat like an athlete,” said Brailsford.
(Any for those who think this story is actually true, no, it’s satire, folks. Twisted Spoke is the Onion of pro cycling news.)