Lotto has been a cycling sponsor for more than 30 years and is the oldest sponsor in the peloton. In 1984 Lotto started as co-sponsor of Tönissteiner and one year later it became main sponsor as, thanks to the popularity and the accessibility of cycling, it was a logical choice for the Belgian National Lottery to make a commitment to the cycling sport. The Lotto slogan ‘Live your dream’ perfectly fits the ambitious character of the team.
Soudal joined as the second name sponsor on 1st January 2015. Lotto and Soudal have an agreement for six years until the end of 2020 – a commitment that’s unique in the peloton. Soudal is Europe’s leading independent manufacturer of sealants, PU-foams and adhesives. The company is active worldwide in more than 130 countries, with branches in 44 countries across every continent. 2013 saw the first co-operation between the team and Soudal when their logo was visible on the shorts of the riders during the Tour de France. In 2014 Soudal became a co-sponsor for the whole season.
In all those years in the peloton the ‘Lotto’ team has gathered 906 victories, of which 32 are stage wins in the Tour de France. The first time a rider of the team won a Tour stage was in 1987 when current manager Marc Sergeant triumphed in Strasbourg. Thanks to the victory of Jelle Vanendert on Plateau de Beille there was euphoria in Belgium again in 2011. In 2014 the yellow jersey and following stage win of Tony Gallopin caused great excitement in France. Last year, André Greipel added four stages to the team’s total number of stage wins at the Tour, with a memorable victory on the Champs Elysées. The team has also been successful at the Belgian Championships, with Jens Debusschere’s win in 2014 taking the team’s national championship tally to 10.
2015 was a very successful year for Lotto Soudal, with a total number of forty victories! Adam Hansen completed his thirteenth consecutive Grand Tour,which means he broke the 57-year-old record of the Spanish rider Bernardo Ruiz, who rode twelve Grand Tours in a row in the fifties. Last season was of course also marked by the crash of Kris Boeckmans at the Vuelta.
Offering crucial opportunities to young riders is very important for the team. In addition, the team can rely on the experience of riders such as André Greipel. In 2016 there are four newcomers. Jelle Wallays has joined the classic core of the team for the one-day races. Polish champion Tomasz Marczynski has to support the leaders during stage races, one of them will be newcomer Rafael Valls. The team also welcomed Frederik Frison, who rode for the Lotto Soudal U23 team last year. Of the eighteen Belgians in the Lotto Soudal WorldTour team, nine come from the own U23 team.