It’s already been a fairly hectic off season for team changes, but for those of you looking for hot, uncensored Euro and US action next year here’s some more stars who are shifting position in the constellations.
Euro team Be One’s highly succesful riders Mickaël Pascal, Bas de Bever (DH) and Corine Dorland (XC) will be joined by Spanish downhiller Oscar Saiz, plus Frenchman Ludovic Dubau and Italian Annabella Stropparo strengthening the XC side.
Both Saiz and Dubua have had several top ten finishes last year, and Stropparro is hoping to bounce back from an injury plagued season with Volvo Cannondale.
Thijs Al and Erwin Bakker come up from the developmental ‘Young Be One’ team with several wins under their belts including a Dutch national Espoir championship each and a Bronze in the European championships for Al.
We announced a few days ago that Brian Lopes was leaving Cannondale to join Team GT, but that turns out to be only partly true.
Lopes will be riding a GT I-Drive (or Ruckus or BMX depending on duties), and he’ll be using the team truck and staying in the same hotel, but he’ll be an ‘independent’ rider with further title sponsorship from FOX as well as Oakley, Alpinestars, Maxxis, Bell, THE, Shimano, and Rock Shox.
Now which jersey am I wearing this season?
On the genuine GT side Roel Paulissen will still be riding on his lonesome in men’s XC after Roland Green leaves for Trek, but he’ll have 23 year old newly pro American rider Kelli Emmett and existing women’s team stalwart Alison Dunlap for company.
High velocity French youth Fabien Barel also strengthens the DH / Dual line up of Steve Peat and Katja Repo hoping to add to stunning wins such as Mammoth and Mt. St. Anne.
On the management front, Stephane Girard has been hired as team manager for the Vouilloz Racing Team. Stephane has been Vouilloz’s coach for the past five years and comes back to France from his position as head of US Cycling.
When it all dies down we’ll try and get together a full roster listing for the major teams, but until then you’ll have to fill in your sticker albums for yourselves.