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.
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.
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.