“Our vision is to build a WINNING TEAM – around a core of South African riders – and to be the best Continental Team in Africa”.
BUT, PROTOUCH IS NOT JUST A TEAM.
ProTouch Sports is an IMPACT INVESTMENT sports business [with road cycling as its focus] centred around the ownership of a Continental and U23 / Junior Franchise Team. The management [and athletes] are actively involved in building the ProTouch brand, developing and driving partnerships and creating return on investment for its stakeholders.
ProTouch creates its own marketing channels, manages brand activations, distribution of cycling-related products and services, develops new products and delivers value to audiences – using cycling as the platform.
In 2017, ProTouch spearheaded the development of the SUPPORT SA TALENT PROJECT aimed at creating a sustainable road cycling ecosystem, that also recognises South African talent. The Project is focussed on developing innovative funding mechanisms and access to opportunities to gain international racing experience, while tracking and ranking over 500 riders [Junior, U23 and Elite racing categories – Men and Ladies] across 42 events annually.
ProTouch also manages and drives MAD RIDER, a fundraising initiative that involves extremely tough cycling challenges. Individuals, businesses and Teams can are challenged to invest and risk everything, to raise awareness and funding for the development and enablement of South Africa’s top riders and Teams.
This initiative is done in partnership with Barak Fund Management and Riparian Advisory – a proud Partner of the ProTouch Team.
A TERRIFIC START TO ITS MAIDEN YEAR AS A CONTINENTAL TEAM.
ProTouch is the #1 UCI-ranked Continental Team in Africa and is 37th in the World. the TEAM has had a terrific start to its maiden year , having won the Sprinters Jersey in its first three UCI 2.1 Tours – Tropicale Amissa Bongo (Gabon), Tour du Rwanda and, Tour d’Indonesia – as well as four Top 10 finishes and finishing 11th overall on GC in Gabon [38 seconds off the Yellow Jersey] and Indonesia. These results were achieved, alongside top teams such as Direct Energie [now Total Direct Energie] and Arkea Samsic. The TEAM took 5th Place on GC at UCI 2.2 Tour of Good Hope and, a Top 10 stage (8th Place) at the extremely tough 10-day UCI 2.2 Le Tour du Maroc, Morocco.
The TEAM had further success at its first UCI 2.HC – Le Tour de Langkawi – finishing in 13th place on GC and 12th Team [out of 21 participating teams] ahead of top Continental Teams Vino-Astana Motors, Giant Cycling and Mitchelton Bike Exchange.
“ProTouch always races as a TEAM and, we celebrate our victories collectively. We never lose, we either WIN or we LEARN”
– Tony Harding, Team Principal
The TEAM concluded the 8-day tour with fourteen Top 20 stage positions, eleven of which were in the Top 15 and six Top 10 places. Having placed 2nd in the 2018 Cycle 100 Challenge [UCI 1.2] the TEAM seized the WIN this year together with riders in 4th, 6th and 8th Place in the one-day UCI Classic. We returned to the UCI 2.2 Tour de Limpopo to defend our title and finished off 2nd on GC to the Dimension Data Continental Team, based in Italy.
The Team has had a number of local wins including the Tshwane Diamond Classic, East Rand Classic and Kremetart Cycling Race prior to heading to Europe to take on the UCI 2.2 – Course Cycliste de Solidarnosc, Poland. The Team finished off with three top 10 stages, the KOM Jersey on Stage 4 and 3rd placed KOM on GC. Our Europe Tour included the GP International Torres Vedras and Volta a Portugal, where riders were exposed to the higher level of European racing. Our next stops continue in Asia, having just completed – UCI 2.1 – Tour of Indonesia and Tour of China 1&2 starting on the 7 September 2019 and Tour of Iran in October, followed by Tour of Senegal in November 2019.
Three of ProTouch’s riders represented South Africa in the Africa Games in August, along side World Tour riders from Team Dimension Data and came away with the GOLD medal in the Team Time Trial, Silver in the Individual Time Trial and 7th Place in the Road Race – earning our team 135 UCI Points and moving the Team up higher in the #1 Team in Africa position.
MEET THE TEAM
ProTouch continues to show its commitment to developing young South African talent, with the introduction in 2019 of its Junior/ U23 Development Team – presented by Spidertech. This young Team includes the following riders, including the 2019 SA National Road and ITT Champion:
ProTouch is proudly supported by a number of official partners: Presenting and Vehicle Partner – Jaguar Sandton; Financial Services Partner – Rockfin; Apparel Partner – Phezulu; Sports Nutrition Partner – Epieq Sports Nutrition; Eyewear Partner – D’Arcs; Helmet, Shoe & Gloves Partner – Giro; Bike Partner – Wilier; Wheel Partner – Meister Wheels; Performance Partners – Performance through Science, SpiderTech, Hosting Partner – Domains.co.za Wanderers Sports Medicine Centre, Mediworxs -S, Sandton Sports Med, Constantia Kloof Sports & Exercise Medicine Centre; Dining Partner – Doppio Zero; and Founding Supporting Partner – Pretoria Box Manufacturers.