How much DOES it cost to run a women's cycling team?

I've always wondered how much we've talking about, when women's cycling teams talk about sponsorship etc. I've heard that an top-level women's team cost about €300k, or the very top level teams are €400k, so I was very interested to read this article on Cycling Weekly, where Matrix Fitness Racing Academy DS/owner/manger Stefan Wyman talks about how much it cost to run a women's team. I'm going to interview Stef over the weekend, but in the meantime, check out these figures, and if you know any companies pass them on!

- Total budget needed to set up and maintain a high-level professional team.
- Can take on up to two main partners - the names of which actually become the name of the team, which is unique in sport!
- Pays for a roster of 12 riders
- Access to the best women's race on the calendar, such as the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Flanders and Flèche Wallone
- Excellent media coverage for sponsors: team cars and clothing covered with their logos and colours
- Perks for company employees: signed team jerseys, rides in the team car during races, maybe even a photo shoot with the team in your office.

- On its own enough to create a world leading, though non-professional team. (The team manager can pay a minimum salary to riders so that they can concentrate on training, resting and racing. This would be a first for a non-professional team, but riders could well end up with a better deal than some big name professional teams have offered riders.)
- Pays for a roster of 8 riders
- Team could include mid-level professional races at home and abroad, including the Women's Tour ('of Britain') that is scheduled to launch in 2014
- Lots of advantages for sponsors, but not quite as much as the full £250,000 package.

- Co-title sponsorship of an amateur team
- Team can race the Women's Tour - an event that is likely to be televised event and receive a lot of media exposure
- VIP opportunities and all the bonuses of the £100,000 sponsorship, but you would have to share the team title with another sponsor.

- As the team would have to be non-professional, the team could split its naming rights more than just two ways.
- Corporate days with the team including rides from your company's headquarters with the team cyclists.
- Full access to the team launch
- Use of the team at trade shows or events

- Provision of a Rider Ambassador for your company
- Corporate days with the team for employees at special events
- Team jerseys and cars will have your logo printed on them.

- Full Rider Ambassador package
- Targeted team and rider return and placement of your logo on team kit and vehicles.

If you want to know more about Stef's philosophy on why now is a GREAT time for any companies you know to get involved with women's cycling, here's his most recent blog: "You can be our legacy". It's UK-focused, but it applies all over the world - and if you ever would like a recommendation for a local team a company can support, let me know in the comments, and I'll be happy to help.

if you have any questions for Stefan, any at all, leave me a comment, or ask me on twitter, and I'll do my best! And of course, if you want to sponsor Stef's team, get in touch with him on twitter, or on info [at] onthedrops [dot] com

Two more articles on this, on Total Women’s Cycling and

UPDATE: I interviewed Stef about all this and more - read it here.

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