Cycling component manufacturer Shimano has confirmed two professional mountain bike teams that will continue to race on its components for the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
The Swiss-based Gstaad-Scott downhill racing team will use Shimano’s SAINT components and pedals in UCI Downhill (DH) races and the US-based Trek Factory Racing will use Shimano’s XTR components in Cross Country (XC) races.
For Gstaad-Scott it gives Shimano the opportunity to support Brendan Fairclough and Neko Mullaly in the incredibly tough and demanding world of downhill racing, continuing the relationship that started with the team in 2008.
The one-year agreement will see Gstaad-Scott using Shimano's downhill-specific SAINT groupset which features Ice Technology brakes, 10-speed drive train and the Shadow Plus rear derailleur with its silent and smooth shifting power. Fairclough and Mullaly will also use SAINT brakes and Shimano’s SPD downhill-specific M647 pedals.
Claudio Caluori, Gstaad-Scott Team Manager: “We place ultimate faith in Shimano SAINT, which is crucial in DH racing. Our riders work together with Shimano´s engineers to develop products, so we know exactly how they’re constructed and why they perform so incredibly well. Plus the riders can always rely on Shimano’s support and commitment at each and every race."
"The support Shimano gives to the entire team is amazing, as is their research and development. To be able to work with their engineers and develop new components is a real honour."
In addition to team sponsorship, Shimano also takes an active role in Downhill race sponsorship. Shimano mechanics provide technical assistance to riders Fairclough and Mullaly and many other riders racing with Shimano at downhill events around the world.
Meanwhile, a two-year agreement with Trek Factory Racing means riders like Dan McConnell, Sergio Mantecon and Emily Batty will keep using Shimano XTR drive train and disc brakes in cross country races throughout 2016 and 2017.
XTR M9000 is Shimano's most advanced mountain bike groupset featuring the option of seamless mechanical or electronic shifting. Trek Factory Racing typically use Di2 technology on all their bikes with the option of 1x11 or 2x11 chainsets using Shimano’s synchro shift option.
Jon Rourke, Trek Factory Racing Team Manager: “Our relationship with Shimano stretches back to 2013. During this time, it has been a great partnership, so I’m really happy that the team will be on XTR for the next two seasons.”
We´ve been running XTR Di2 for a year now and the difference electronic shifting makes is phenomenal. By testing and racing these products in such extreme circumstances, I think the feedback we´re able to give Shimano helps make even better products for consumers.”
Shimano's Rudy Bouwmeester Sports Marketing Manager: "We're thrilled to be able to sign two well established and highly respected teams in Downhill and Cross Country."
"The fact that both teams believe in Shimano's products is a fantastic endorsement for us, but perhaps more than this, we're very happy that Gstaad-Scott and Trek Factory Racing will be part of Team Shimano's long term strategy."
For more on Shimano's race team sponsorship see www.weraceshimano.com