Kenta Gallagher to Fill in for Injured Matt Simmonds on Cannondale Team

Aug 1, 2019
by James Smurthwaite  

Kenta Gallagher was planning on running this full season as a privateer on a Commencal but this weekend he'll find himself in the Cannondale pits as part of "Test #6" while Matt Simmonds recovers from an injury.

bigquotesSo this weekend is going to be very different for me, due to Matt Simmonds being out for this race I’ve been called in as a back up rider for Cannondale test six... It’s super cool to get this opportunity!Kenta Gallagher

Matt Simmonds fractured his eye socket in finals at Les Gets, meaning he has to sit this one out. Rather than come to Val di Sole with no riders, Cannondale gave Kenta a ring during the week and asked him to fill in while Matt recovers. According to a WynTV interview, Kenta hasn't actually ridden this bike yet, bar a few car park bounces, so it will be a real trial by fire when he takes to the track today.

bigquotesGutted to say I won’t be racing in Val di Sole this week. During finals in Les Gets I took a big slam that resulted in a fractured eye socket, hoping to be back soon enough though. Good luck to all on the black snakeMatt Simmonds

Filling in is a common practice in motocross but is very rare in downhill. It means Cannondale will be able to continue gathering data about their twin shock bike while Kenta gets a shot at proving himself on a factory set up. There's no word on when Matt will be back but we're assuming Kenta will continue to race for Cannondale in Lenzerheide next week too. We wish Matt all the best in recovery and look forward to seeing if Kenta can take full advantage of this golden opportunity.

Regions in Article
Bikeland Val Di Sole


  • + 122
 I'm free this weekend if intense wanna fill gwins spot...
  • + 1
 @hhaaiirryy Gwin races in Men's not Women's
  • + 2
 @in2falling: and not Seniors' either Wink
  • + 57
 Cool move of Cannondale to do this. Hope he smashes it and gets himself a job!
  • + 61
 I hope this starts a trend with injured riders having temporary replacements pulled in from the privateers to show what they can do. I think it would make all riders more intrigued with the idea that they could get that call one day and not locked out of the industry if they don't find sponsors at the beginning of the season. Motocross does it with success so why not MTB?
  • + 3
 @vjunior21: yes yes and yes to this
  • + 13
 Don't Atwill and Kerr also need filling in for? Anyone else I forgot? There has to be some more injured... Ah, after tomorrow half of my fantasy team (sorry!)... We can fill in! Razz Wink
  • + 15
 Tahnee, Rachel, Myriam and Cecile Ravanel in the womens!
  • + 4
 @haroman666: Oh yeah, true! I was mostly thinking of the guys, so forgot about that... Them being women, I couldn't fill in. Or could I nowadays?... Wink Joker *I kid*
Anyways yeah send up some women privateers too!
  • + 8
 It should happen more. Everything is in place and budgeted for. Even if the bike and setup isn’t ideal for the new rider, it’s probably still better than what they are used to. Best of luck Kenta.
  • + 10
 Cool to see kenta get a shot but how good would it have been if it was Ratboy instead!
  • + 37
 I don’t think he’d pass a drug test if he was picked...
  • + 7
 It's been done before - Rich Barlow did it for Animal / Orange in the year 2000 for two world cups when (either Greg or Tim Ponting, can't remember) was injured. Cool to see it come back though!
  • + 4
 Thanks Tommy, edited now.
  • + 9
 @jamessmurthwaite: No problem Smurf! I'v still got the old Dirt mag where it was featured. Showing my age now!
  • + 6
 Didn't Devinci/Keegan have to do it last year?
  • + 9
 Sorry, can we go back to the bit about Simmonds fracturing his eye socket?!! :O
  • + 4
 YT Mob and Martin Whitely are you watching this! W Angel out all season and zero rep at the races, Trummer could have easily slotted in and rapped your factory team!! With experiance and exposure, this is so great to see
  • + 5
 i guess the denim destroyer wasn't available...
  • + 5
 he´s got some work to do
  • + 2
 @funkzander: His real work were on the phone to him when Cannondale called...
  • + 1
 He's got a bunch of busted fingers!
  • + 4
 The sports very own Fill-in-Phill.
  • + 3
 Cannondale....always going their own way to open some eyes. Best wishes on healing Matt and tear it up Kenta!
  • + 1
 Btw, the SRAM Young Guns did it as well, because Moritz Ribarich hurt his shoulder right before the season, they spontaneously recruited another promising junior :-) His name is Benjamin Beck.
  • + 3
 Barlow was a Royal Racing rider at the time as well, who let him take the opportunity. Pretty Cool.
  • + 3
 So many injuries, specially tops on women's - why not give them privateers a chance !?
  • + 3
 Im happy to fill in for anyone injured.
  • + 3
 I don't understand why they didn't call me? ????
  • + 11
 DOH!! I screened a call today from a random number. They didn't leave a message. I think I missed my shot.
  • + 2
 Is he available to pick for Fantasy?
  • + 3
 Get it Kenta! Hell Ya!
  • + 1
 So can we pick Kenta for our fantasy teams?
  • + 2
 Good luck to him
  • + 1
 Cannon Rock in #D
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