UCI WorldTour cycling outfit Team Sky has agreed a deal for UK petrochemicals manufacturer Ineos to become its new title sponsor, according to multiple reports.
Pay-television broadcaster Sky announced in December that it would be withdrawing its backing of the team at the end of 2019.
Team Sky’s future has been in doubt since the announcement but it now appears that Ineos, which is owned by British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, is prepared to step in and ensure the team’s future.
The CyclingNews website reported that the team is expected to become Team Ineos in 2020. The report said that Ineos has been preferred over a Colombian alternative involving support from state-owned oil and gas company Ecopetrol.
Team Sky sports director Matteo Tosatto recently told Spanish sports newspaper Marca that the team should have an agreement in place ahead of the Giro d’Italia in May.
Last year, Ineos agreed a record-breaking sponsorship deal to support Britain’s challenge for the 2021 America’s Cup sailing event.