About Team Novo Nordisk – Racing to Change Diabetes

Team Novo Nordisk is a global all-diabetes sports team of cyclists spearheaded by the world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team. The team’s mission is to inspire, educate and empower everyone affected by diabetes.

Team Novo Nordisk is part of the Changing Diabetes® initiative, Novo Nordisk’s global commitment to improving conditions for the more than 437 million people living with diabetes today, and those at risk of developing diabetes.

Phil Southerland, CEO & Co-Founder of Team Novo Nordisk
Exercise is the ‘billion-dollar drug’ for the management of diabetes that does not get prescribed enough.
 
Phil Southerland, CEO & Co-Founder of Team Novo Nordisk

Team Novo Nordisk in action

2019 marks the seventh season the all-diabetes men’s professional cycling team is racing on the International Cycling Union (UCI) Professional Continental Tour, which is taking them to numerous countries around the world in Europe, USA, the Middle East, and Asia as they continue racing to change diabetes.

The 2018 season saw Team Novo Nordisk achieve its best results to date, including 11 top five finishes and seven podium appearances. David Lozano (ESP) earned the team’s second victory when he soloed to win Stage 7 of the Tour du Rwanda. The Spaniard had a standout season that saw him collect 10 top 10 finishes including fifth overall at the Tour of Estonia, fifth overall at the Tour du Rwanda and the KOM jersey following Stage 3 of the Vuelta Aragon. Frenchman Quentin Valognes, who now functions as an ambassador for the team, took home the Intermediate Sprint Jersey at the Dubai Tour while fellow Frenchman Charles Planet earned the Fighter’s Jersey on Stage 3 of the PostNord Danmark Rundt and wore the Sprint leader’s jersey on Stage 1 of the Tour of Hongrie. Planet also stood on the podium after finishing runner-up on the Tour of Hongrie Prologue.

Off the bike, Team Novo Nordisk riders meet thousands of people every year who are inspired by their message and empowered by their actions at races spanning the globe. In 2018, Team Novo Nordisk professional athletes and ambassadors participated in more than 300 events around the world including diabetes congresses, pharmaceutical, and healthcare industry events and community-based diabetes gatherings

Additionally, Team Novo Nordisk has the largest social media following for both the diabetes community and professional cycling. This includes more Facebook followers than all World Tour teams combined. The team proudly engages regularly with over 8.5 million fans on all major social media platforms to continue spreading its mission to inspire, educate and empower everyone affected by diabetes

Phil Southerland, CEO & Co-Founder of Team Novo Nordisk
By using sports as a platform, Team Novo Nordisk gives millions of people affected be diabetes role models and hope and inspiration to chase their dreams.
Phil Southerland, CEO & Co-Founder of Team Novo Nordisk

The road to Team Novo Nordisk: two journeys, one goal

In December 2012, Novo Nordisk and Phil Southerland, co-founder and CEO of Team Novo Nordisk, partnered to create Team Novo Nordisk, based on a shared goal to inspire, educate and empower people around the world affected by diabetes.

This unique partnership is the result of two inspirational journeys:

  • In 1982, at seven months old, Phil was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. His mother was told he was unlikely to live past 25. Around the same time, Novo Nordisk – already a pioneer in the treatment of diabetes – marketed its first insulin that was identical to human insulin.
  • From an early age, Phil’s effective management of diabetes included riding his bike. At college he motivated friend and fellow cyclist with diabetes, Joe Eldridge, to improve his diabetes control in a similar way. This inspired Phil to spread diabetes awareness to a larger audience, and in 2005 he formed a cycling team that included athletes both with and without diabetes. In 2007, this team went on to win the 3,000-mile tag-team Race Across America.
  • In 2005 - the same year as Phil formed the team - Novo Nordisk launched the Changing Diabetes® programme, which aims to ensure better outcomes for more patients, by creating more opportunities to live well with diabetes.
  • As Phil travelled around the world, he witnessed the Novo Nordisk interest in supporting the diabetes community. This was an immediate shared goal, as was the desire to empower people with diabetes, and show that living with diabetes shouldn’t stop you from pursuing your dreams.
  • Based on these shared goals, Team Novo Nordisk was created in December 2012.

Team Novo Nordisk’s goal 

When diagnosed with diabetes, many people think they will not be able to live life the way they had hoped. The Team Novo Nordisk athletes are people with diabetes who have a talent and a strong desire to not let their condition stop them from following their dreams and competing at the top level.

The athletes work hard to manage their diabetes. Through their experiences and life stories, they hope to inspire, educate and empower others by showing what may be possible.

References

Team Novo Nordisk is a global all-diabetes sports team of cyclists spearheaded by the world’s first all-diabetes UCI Professional Continental cycling team. In 2012, Phil Southerland, co-founder and CEO of the team, and global healthcare company Novo Nordisk, came together to create Team Novo Nordisk, based on a shared vision to inspire, educate and empower people around the world affected by diabetes. 

For more information, go to www.teamnovonordisk.com.