Pegasus failed to take off again.
After not even getting off the ground for a ProTeam license, the team whiffed again on a Professional Continental license. The UCI turned them down for the second time and registration is now closed for the first and second division teams.
It’s tough being a mythological horse with funding that’s more fantasy than reality.
RIght now the phone is ringing and Christina Watches captain Michael Rasmussen picks up the phone. “A collect call, sure, I’ll take it,” says the happy Chicken. “Hey, Robert Hunter and Robbie McEwen, how’s it going guys? So you need a ride?”
In a word, yes, fast.
At this point the outcome shouldn’t be a huge surprise but that’s how Pegasus CEO Chris White reacted. “We are shocked that the license was denied. Significant cost reductions were made and additional sponsorship both from within our existing sponsor base and an external group was gathered, in order to stabilise the team financially in the short term,” said White. “The people within the organization were at the centre of this action and commitment, which is a real testament to the mate-ship within the team. We do not want to give up. The team is exploring whether there are other options for next year.”
And the option would be …. a Sub Continental license?
Early this year, White told Velonews “If you aim for the stars you can still achieve a great deal even if you don’t get all the way there. We’ll be coming out swinging and hitting the ground running in the Classics and shorter stage races – we want to show what we can do.” Well, sadly, this show has definitely been postponed.
Sprinter Robert Hunter had hoped for more opportunities after leaving Garmin for Pegasus. “I would have stayed with Garmin but with the sprinters coming with Cervélo, I wasn’t sure my chances and I wanted a long term project. I don’t want to keep changing teams,” said Hunter.
The emphasis would be on long term and at age 33, he doesn’t have a season to waste. We’ll certainly hear more about this story but for this season the ending has already been written. Pegasus no fly.