For decades now, neutral support at the Tour de France has had a distinct color – Mavic Yellow. But today, Shimano’s announcement means the end of one era, and the beginning of another.
While Shimano has previously offered neutral support for selected A.S.O. (Amaury Sport Organisation) races including La Vuelta, this new agreement marks an extended partnership. That new partnership includes the biggest races of all including Paris-Nice, Pari-Roubaix, and of course, the Tour de France.
The announcement coincides with Shimano’s centenary year. We’re also guessing that this may be the year that we see a new Dura Ace group introduced, which would tie in nicely with Shimano’s increased support of road racing.