World Tour professional cycling is the most popular spectator sport in the world (think of the millions who line the Champs Elysees for the Tour de France), and yet pro cyclists have none of the “red carpet appeal” enjoyed by top athletes in other professional sports. With the launch of the first Australian-based team in the pro peloton, GreenEDGE would change all of that. The roster of seasoned pros shared one thing in common – Australia – a country known for being scrappy on the field and friendly off it, and with a distinct personality that could separate the riders from their peers and serve as the basis for a new type of rider – less long-suffering introvert and more chippy extrovert. Within days of launch, they had the largest following of any pro team, with a new membership scheme that boasted thousands of paid inductees, and a site that got more than 7 million hits in its first two weeks.
We started by building the basis for a real relationship between the team, its riders and the public. We used aboriginal artwork to convey a sense of place, focused on what made Aussie riders different from Europeans, and created custom fonts using the riders' actual handwriting to convey a sense of authenticity.
To begin creating a connection with fans, we designed a website that featured the riders as real people, racing for love of sport and training in the raucous spirit of hard-fighting, hard playing Australians. The entire site is contained on one page, making it easy to navigate in true "walkabout" style.
The first section that users wander into is a gallery, featuring a library of home-movie style videos designed to create a connection with fans outside of the hours of suffering spent on a bike. All sections, which are arranged horizontally on a vertically scrolling page, are searchable through arrow scrolling and swiping gestures, making this truly cross-platform and mobile-friendly.
Rider profiles feature verité photography and the riders' own handwriting and personalized quotes, carried through into race reports where riders are encouraged to speak openly about upcoming races and stages. Each of these content modals opens out on to the page, a visual means to say "We'll come to you" instead of forcing the user to dig around. A nod to Aussie hospitality.