Today came the official announcement out of France that Team Lapierre DH Powered By Saab Salomon has engaged World Cup legend David Vazquez to be their lead rider for their brand new team. The 28 year old Vazquez, who has won many titles in his career, will be joined by one of the youngest riders on the 2008 international circuit, Danny Hart of the UK, in his first year as a junior racer. Also named on the team is endurance downhiller Greg Doucende of France. The team will be operated by the newly formed Pure Agency in France.David's 2007 season was his best in recent years, winning the European Downhill Championships, finishing 2nd at the Vigo World Cup, and is currently ranked No.5 in the world.
After a long term partnership with the successful Team Maxxis and Team MSC, who are also based in Barcelona, Spain, David felt it was time for a change of direction:
"I'm very excited about this new and innovative partnership. To be leading this new international program with major partners like Saab, Salomon and of course Lapierre, and with the behind-the-scenes expertise of ex-World Cup racers like Nicolas Vouilloz and Cyril Lagneau, this will be a brand new chapter in my career. I also feel that my recent change in form, mainly due to my coach Tomi Misser who is still as fast as he was when he was winning World Cups, has made a big difference to me. I am really excited about racing for my new team in 2008".
The team will focus on the Saab Salomon Avalanche Trophy series, the UCI World Cup and other select major mountain bike events.
Gilles Lapierre, the Managing Director of Lapierre spoke on the new team:
"It's a professional structure with international ambitions, which is in perfect harmony with the expansion strategy of Lapierre. The reputation of the members of Pure Agency also made it an easy decision, we are confident that they will create the proper structure and opportunities in order to achieve our objectives."
The team will use the new Lapierre DH-200 (FPS2 Technology) and the Spicy (OST Technology). Other technical co-sponsors of the team include Mavic Wheels, Fox Suspension, Hutchinson Tyres, Shimano Brakes and Drive Train, E-Thirteen Chain Retention Systems, Easton Stems and Handlebars and Seat Posts, Selle Italia Saddles, and Giro Helmets.