A mid-week Rock Racing update

Posted on 13. Jan, 2009 by in news

Last we heard, Baden Cooke was contemplating suing Rock Racing owner Michael Ball for the promised money from his contract worth “many hundreds of thousands of dollars”.  Earlier today, Rock Racing issued a statement basically saying that the “rumors of Rock Racing’s untimely demise have been greatly exaggerated” and that the team is proceeding with a full racing schedule.

Also today, cyclingnews published an interview where Ball acknowledges that the economic downturn had a major impact and that he is funding the team out of his own pocket for the first 6 months while looking for a new co-sponsor. 

From the Cooke & Ball interviews, it seems that terms were agreed verbally and a contract was drafted, Cooke signed it and returned it to the team for signature. At that point, Cooke waited and waited until he was informed that the terms had changed.

What about the bike sponsors? Well according to Ball, they do have bikes but it is not with the companies where negociations happened in the past. Last year, Rock Racing started the year with De Rosa bikes and were also in talks with Fuji.

Did other riders originally listed on the roster chose to leave the team when the new terms were offered? Only time will tell.

The interview closes with Ball stating that the team will race the Amgen  Tour of California, and he mentions riders such as Tyler Hamilton, Oscar Sevilla, Victor Hugo Peña and Chris Baldwin as being tentatively on the roster.  But hold on, the Tour of California is a UCI (2.HC) race and therefore only UCI teams can participate and Baldwin is not on the UCI roster for Rock Racing but on the ‘club’ team.  Unless things have changed once again.

But wait, there’s more. Again according to cyclingnews, Jeremiah Wiscovitch won his court case against Rock Racing to get the value less depreciation of his training bike. Wiscovitch who raced for the team for two years was terminated at the end of 2008 right after the Tour of Missouri, and had to return his training bike. Feeling that this was in contravention of his contract, Wiscovitch took Rock Racing to court and won.

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5 Responses to “A mid-week Rock Racing update”

  1. Anonymous

    14. Jan, 2009

    So let me get this straight… Wiscovitch didn’t fight to get his job back. He fought to get his bike back? Uh, o-k.

  2. Frank

    14. Jan, 2009

    Wiscovitch knows as good as anyone on the team, there is no future at RR. The team has been run into the ground by Mr. Ball. What is a job with Mr. Ball worth? What is a used DeRosa worth? I think Wiscovitch made the right decision. The team will continue their descent to footnote status. But according to Mr. Ball, they will look cool.

  3. Anonymous

    14. Jan, 2009

    Come on Anonymous. If someone fires you, you sue for damages, not to get your job back. Wiscovitch made the right move

  4. Anonymous

    15. Jan, 2009

    Francisco Mancebo debutará en febrero con el Rock&Racing en el Tour de Californi

    http://www.esciclismo.com/ampliada.asp?Id=9306

  5. Anonymous

    15. Jan, 2009

    It is looking bleak for RR today. Cyclingnews says the UCI hasn’t received the 10% rider salary guarantee and has given the team 24 hours to deposit the money or they can’t race in any UCI events of a certain ranking. That means no Tyler, No Bahati, defense of their titles. Mr. Ball is a D Bag who has no integrity when it comes to his interactions with others. I like the team, love some of the kits, and wish all the guys the best. It would be awesome of someone could just buy out the team and do some good with them. Or perhaps the board of Rock and Republic could oust Ball