The past month was filled with thank-yous, speculation, and trolling.
Florian Nicolai to Trek, Damien Oton to Orbea, Fabio Wibmer to Canyon, Nico Vink and Hannah Bergemann to Transition, FMD Racing to Canyon, George Brannigan to Propain, Seth Sherlock to Intense, Kilian Bron to Commencal, and the list goes on...
It's been an exciting couple weeks trying to figure out who is going to be riding for who in 2020. If you want to catch up, you can use the Racing Rumours tag
or check out our Race Rumours Recap article
We still haven't seen the end of this season's roster changes with Greg Callaghan, Reed Boggs, Rebecca Rusch, Darren Berrecloth, Jared Graves, and Cody Kelley all having done the seemingly obligatory Instagram posts thanking their past sponsors without announcing who they'll be riding for next year. Let the hype-building continue for another couple weeks!
We compile the very best from the past decade
Wyn Masters Gets Married & Rachel Atherton Gets Engaged
There's nothing like the off-season for some good old-fashioned romance. Wyn Masters tied the knot with his girlfriend of six years in December and sealed the deal with a wheelie, of course.
Rachel Atherton also got engaged to her long-time partner Olly Davey. It's hard for professional mountain bikers to see their loved ones during the busy race season, nevermind get married, so we have a feeling Rachel won't say "I do" until after the race season.
Surgery for Neff & Ferrand Prevot, Russia Receives 4-Year Ban
2020 is a big year for cross-country's elite. Both Pauline Ferrand Prevot and Jolanda Neff pre-qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics after their top-5 performances at the Mont-Sainte-Anne World Championships, but now have question marks around their names as the final countdown begins to July.
Ferrand Prevot announced that her iliac endofibrosis has returned
just over a year after her first diagnosis. Ferrand Prevot has apparently been struggling with power in her lower left leg while racing cyclocross and when she went for a scan, the doctors confirmed that it was another endofibrosis. Although it was a smaller lesion than last time, it still required surgery. Time will tell if she can get back to race-winning form in time for Tokyo as she did this year.
As for Jolanda Neff, she was involved in a crash she describes as "life-threatening"
while training in North Carolina. She apparently crashed into a pile of tree trunks and branches and suffered a broken rib, a partially collapsed lung and a ruptured spleen. Although her spleen is still in her body, it is now dead. While this shouldn't affect her in the long run, she will have to be careful not to raise her blood pressure over the next three months or she risks bursting the plug in her artery, which would mean internal bleeding and emergency surgery.
Russian athletes' Olympic dreams of competing for their nation may be in jeopardy as well as The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) was declared non-compliant
with the World Anti-Doping Code for a period of four years. Exactly how this impacts Russian cycling athletes is not yet clear, but according to the statement, athletes in cycling events, which include cross-country, BMX, road, and track, can compete as individuals not under a national banner proven they can show they were not involved in doping issues in any way.
SRAM's Patent Legal Battle
Appeals court sides with Fox, small victory in chainring patent legal battle
Bicycle Retailer reported
on December 18th that the federal appeals court has given Fox a small victory in its chainring patent legal battle with SRAM.
The case has been ongoing since 2015 when SRAM sued Fox-owned Race Face for patent infringement and not licensing SRAM's patent for its chainring retention features. In 2017, the board upheld the patent, saying that the technology was far from obvious and therefore patentable.
Now, the appeals court has "sided with Fox on the secondary concerns and other issues and remanded the case to the USPTO board, where SRAM will have to prove that the secondary issues outweigh the obviousness of the technology." In a separate case, Fox is also suing SRAM-owned RockShox for an alleged infringement on Fox's suspension patents.
Canyon Targeted by "Massive Cyber Attack" Over Christmas Period
Canyon has announced it was struck by a "massive cyber attack" over the Christmas break by a "professionally organized group".
The attack has now been identified and stopped and Canyon claims that the majority of its software and servers are encrypted and therefore protected from the attack.
They do say that it will result in some delays in orders that have been placed through the website.