Johan Bruyneel, general manager of the Astana Cycling Team and one of the most successful sports director in cycling history, has joined the Board of Directors of World Bicycle Relief, a SRAM non-profit organization based in Chicago, Illinois. The appointment comes as he is about to embark upon a tour of his own, promoting his new book, entitled We Might As Well Win.
Bruyneel is the mastermind behind eight of the past nine Tour de France victories, including Lance Armstrong’s record-setting seven straight yellow jerseys (1999-2005), and Alberto Contador’s heroic ride to his first Tour de France win in 2007. Contador is currently leading the Giro d’Italia, which ends in Milano June 1.
“Serving on the World Bicycle Relief Board is an opportunity to give back to the world through something that has given me so much in life,” Bruyneel said. “To the world’s poor, time lost to walking destroys much of their productive day. A bicycle represents a leap in efficiency that magnifies everything they do. We often forget that the bike is used for more than sport; for many people it’s an invaluable part of everyday life.”
Trek Bicycle Corp. president John Burke, sponsor of the Astana team, has advised World Bicycle Relief since 2005. SRAM also sponsors the Astana team, providing its Red gruppo.
According to F.K. Day, president of World Bicycle Relief: “Johan’s proven leadership and management at the highest levels of competitive cycling will help us accomplish our mission of serving the transportation needs of the poor.”
World Bicycle Relief was founded by SRAM Corporation in 2005 and is supported by many leaders in the bicycle industry. World Bicycle Relief specializes in large-scale, comprehensive bicycle programs by providing supply chain management, technical knowledge and logistics expertise to poverty relief and disaster assistance initiatives. To date, nearly 50,000 new bicycles have been provided as part of a completed program in Sri Lanka and several major current projects in Africa.
Meanwhile, beginning on June 16, Bruyneel will embark on a US book signing tour, starting at Lance Armstrong Mellow Johnny’s bike shop in Austin, Texas. The tour wraps up in Seattle, Washington on July 11 after criss-crossing the States, with stops planned in Trek’s hometown of Madison, Wisconsin.
Bruyneel’s new book, We Might as Well Win was published by Houghton-Mifflin. The 240-page book is his first and chronicles his success guiding Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador to eight Tour de France victories between 1999 and 2007. Bruyneel’s teams also won the Giro d’Italia and several classics as well. Contador currently leads the Giro.