Tinker Juarez has announced his split with Cannondale in a now-deleted social media post.
Juarez, a Mountain Bike Hall of Famer, World Cup winner and two-time Olympian, first signed with Cannondale in 1994 as part of the legendary Volvo/Cannondale team and was awarded the Icon Award by the brand in 2005. Juarez still races to this day and won the 60-64 category at this year's Masters World Championships in Pra Loup
After more than 25 years, it looks like Juarez's time with the brand has come to an end. He said in a now-deleted Facebook post:
"Hi everyone, if you haven't heard or not Cannondale is dropping me because they don't have the budget to keep me on, $25,000 isn't a lot for a cyclist who race almost 50 years and I don't have time to write everything I've done, but I could guarantee I sold more bikes than anyone racing for Cannondale. I gave my life to promote Cannondale and I believe I race as much as your top XC racer and more, so how can you just drop the best Ambassador in the sport. I got this very powerful and touching text from my fan Paul today after my ride. He said, "if Cannondale drops you after all you have done to represent the brand, I will boycott them forever! They should grant you life ambassador status because you are the greatest of all time. You are a legend and inspire me to keep riding. God bless." These words hit me and I am so thankful to Paul for these kind words. I know there are 10,000 people that feel like I do, please post your feeling because it is not fair to be done like this so cold and unexpectedly."
Cannondale have responded to Juarez's announcement with an official statement.
"Since the start of the Volvo-Cannondale team in 1994, our riders have inspired a generation of cyclists, and there is no rider more inspirational and aspirational from the early days of mountain bike racing than Tinker Juarez. Through the last 27 years Cannondale has supported Tinker’s journey that included racing at the top of the sport and showcasing cycling in the boom era of mountain bike racing through current day competitions and events.
“Tinker is one of the most recognized cross-country racers the world has known. We have celebrated almost three decades of competition together where he has represented Cannondale and his partners with an inspiring commitment to his craft and his fans. We will always be appreciative of the time we’ve shared with Tinker on two wheels.
“A true legend in the sport, a mountain bike hall of fame member, two-time US Olympic team member, 7x US National Champion (XC & 24-hour solo category), World Cup winner, and Masters World Champion, Tinker has done and won it all.
“To better align with his goals in the coming years, Tinker has decided to seek a different level of support than what Cannondale is offering, from another bike partner. We will forever be one of his biggest fans and grateful for the contributions Tinker has given to Cannondale, the sport of mountain biking and the broader cycling community.
Thank you, Tinker."
We have reached out to Tinker for comment and will continue to update this story as it progresses.