Frans Verbeeck's stellar cycling career almost wasn't. In the early 1970's, Frans was struggling to earn his place in the pro peloton when he decided to hang up his wheels and find a job that would allow him to support his wife and young son. He landed a job driving a milk delivery truck but, after only one short year, his passion for the bike prompted him to return to the ranks of professional cycling.
For 'the Milkman', a name given him by his Belgian fans, turned out to be a fortuitous move. Verbeeck notched a number of high-profile wins including the Fleche Wallone, Het Volk, Amstel Gold, and the 1973 Belgian National Championship beating the likes of Eddy Merckx in the process. The Milkman delivered 166 victories as a professional.
Frans retired for good at the end of the 1976 season, and in 1977, started his own company in a partnership with the legendary Italian clothing manufacturer, Santini. Realizing the importance of his cycling experience, in 1988, Frans began producing cycling clothing under his own brand name, Vermarc Sport, a combination of the Verbeeck surname and the first name of Franz's son, Marc, who not only followed his father's footsteps into the pro peloton but now acts as the company's president.
One of the company's most strategic business decisions was to focus on providing cycling apparel for racing teams and clubs rather than enter the mass-market arena. With 57,000 licensed racers in Belgium alone, there was a great need for a supply of high quality custom clothing. Subsequently, Vermarc Sport has provided team kits for the sport's leading professional teams including TVM, DAF Trucks and Greg Lemond's 1989 Tour de France winning team, ADR. Today, they provide clothing for the Belgian powerhouse teams Quick Step, and Davitamon as well as Palmans/Collstrop, Vlaandaren 2000 and Landbouwkrediet –Tonisstiener professional cycling teams.
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