France — The early-season successes of the Argos-Shimano team did not go unnoticed by Tour de France organizers, who on Friday granted the Felt-sponsored team an invitation to the world’s most prestigious grand tour. Argos-Shimano was one of four teams granted a wildcard invitation to the three-week stage race in July.
“It is a great reward for the hard work of all the cyclists and the entire staff, as well as for our partners’ faith in this ambitious cycling project,” said the team’s general manager Iwan Spekenbrink.
The team started the season under the name 1t4i and just last week introduced Argos Oil as a new title sponsor. The momentum continued on Wednesday, when German sprinter Marcel Kittel powered his Felt F1 team bike to a win at the 100th edition of the Scheldeprijs race in Belgium.
Kittel, just 23, scored a stage win at last year’s Vuelta a España, and will be considered a top threat at any sprinting stage of this year’s Tour.