As Racing Rumour season gets into full swing we have pulled together all of the departures and retirements so far this offseason and this will be updated as more news comes in.
Dante Silva Joins the Canyon CLLCTV Factory DH Team
Louise Ferguson & Veronika Widmann Join Continental Nukeproof Factory Racing
Jesse Melamed Joins the Canyon CLLCTV Enduro Team
One of the big off-season rumours has finally been answered as Canyon announces Jesse Melamed is joining the Canyon CLLCTV Enduro Team.
Christopher Grice Joins Specialized Gen-S
Mille Johnset Joins the Canyon CLLCTV Factory DH Team
Canyon has announced that Mille Johnset will be joining its CLLCTV Factory DH Team.
After previously racing on the now disbanded Commencal/100% team
Mille Johnset has made the jump to the CLLCTV Factory DH Team and will be racing alongside Troy Brosnan and Luca Shaw once World Cup racing finally kicks off in June.
Lapierre Returns to World Cup XC After 11 Years with the Lapierre Mavic Unity Team
After an 11-year hiatus Lapierre is back racing at World Cups with the newly formed Lapierre-Mavic Unity team.
The new Lapierre XC will be focusing on the XC and XCC Short Track World Cup calendar while also committing to the next two Olympic events in 2024 and 2028. With the new team, Lapierre will have its own teams in XC, Enduro and e-Enduro racing.
Filling out the roster on the Lapierre-Mavic Unity team is Malene Degn, Annie Last, Isaure Medde, Sebastian Fini Carstensen, Thomas Litscher and Erik Haegstad.
Alongside racing on Lapierre bikes the team will be using Mavic's Crossmax SL Ultimate carbon wheels, Fox suspension, components from FSA and Michelin tires.
Greg Williamson Signs With Madison SaracenPRESS RELEASE: Madison Saracen
Madison Saracen is delighted to announce the signing of Greg Williamson to complete its line-up for the 2023 season. With three World Cup podiums to his name, Greg knows a thing or two about mixing it with the best and teaming him with World Cup winner Matt Walker, Madison Saracen once again has a very strong line-up for the coming season.
As well as those podium finishes, Greg is a two-time British DH Champion and has finished top 10 at the World Championships as well as top 10 in the overall World Cup series. He’s been racing Elite level downhill for a decade and brings a wealth of talent and experience to Madison Saracen.
This news comes shortly after Madison Saracen announced the return of its Development Team to complete the all-British set-up for 2023. Having the experience on hand of two high-profile riders in Matt and Greg will undoubtedly help these young riders as they look to carve out their future in the sport.
Greg Williamson said: “I’m absolutely delighted to have signed with Madison Saracen. It has been a breath of fresh air having spent a decent amount of time away testing and training with the team already. Can’t thank them enough for making me feel welcome and comfortable on the bike so soon. Bring on the race season!”
Will Longden, Madison Saracen Team Manager, said: “It’s fantastic that Greg is joining the team this year, as British Champion and a well-respected rider worldwide, he makes the perfect team mate to Matt Walker. Both have the experience and respect to bring the best out in each other and I’m sure we are going to have a lot of fun along the way.
“It’s a big year for the World Cup as Warner Brothers Discovery come in to rejuvenate the series with some exciting new changes and plans that we’re all looking forward to. Along with this, the World Championships in Fort William Scotland, Greg’s homeland, is going to be an amazing event and a focus of our racing year. Bring it on!”
The 2023 Downhill World Cup season kicks off in Lenzerheide in early June and Madison Saracen will be on the start line, but they have plenty of other racing lined up as well so it won’t be long before you’ll get to see Matt and Greg in action.
Johannes Fischbach Signs with GasGas
Tim Bringer & Griffin Paulson Join the Canyon CLLCTV
Sam Blenkinsop Signs With Crestline Bike Co.
Henrique Avancini Joins the Caloi Henrique Avancini Racing Team
Charlie Harrison Joins Santa Cruz in Development Role
Following the announcement of his retirement
at the end of last year, Charlie Harrison has revealed that he will be using his skills and experience to help develop future bikes for Santa Cruz.
Craig Evans Signs with Airdrop
Lewis Buchanan Signs with OnlyFans
Jamie Edmondson Signs with Chili Racing Brigade
Keegan Swenson Signs for 3 More Years with Santa Cruz
Amy Morrison Signs with Transition
Lewis Buchanan Signs with Hayes and Delium
Vaea Verbeeck Staying with Rocky Mountain for Another 2 Years
Kasper Woolley Moves on from Yeti
Kasper Woolley has announced on social media that he is leaving Yeti after three years. Kasper secured multiple top 10 EWS finishes during the 2021 season but had a difficult year in 2022 with multiple injuries including a freak pump track accident in Whistler
. 2022 was the first season for Kasper on the full factory team after taking impressive results while on the Yeti / OneUp team.
Chris Akrigg Parts Ways with GT
Chris Akrigg has announced on social media that he is leaving GT after three years. Chris joined GT
at the start of 2020 after being with Mongoose for 12 years
. As part of his announcement Chris also mentioned he is leaving Cycling Sports Group who he has worked with for 15 years.
Miranda Miller Parts Ways with Kona
Miranda Miller has announced on social media that she will be leaving Kona after four years. From racing DH to the EWS and a less conventional approach to racing in 2022. The past year saw the launch of DVRGNT Minds and the five-part film series 'Here, There, Everywhere.'
Victor Koretzky & Martin Vidaurre Join Specialized Factory Racing
Specialized's XC race team will feature two new riders in 2023 as Victor Koretzky and Martin Vidaurre are added to the roster.
Joining Specialized's Factory XC team in 2023 Martin Vidaurre will be taking on his first Elite season following a very successful 2022 World Cup series where he won all but one race. Joining Martin as another fresh face on the team is Victor Koretzky who was a last-minute addition to Specialized's team after the collapse of his previous road racing team. Since his last team ended Victor was picked up by the Bora Hansgrohe team where he will race on the road alongside XC World Cups with Specialized.
Victor Koretzky and Martin Vidaurre will join Haley Batten, Laura Stigger, Sina Frei and Christopher Blevins who are returning to the team in 2023.
Filippo Colombo Joins the Scott-SRAM Racing Team
Giant Factory Racing Launches 2023 Team Roster Including Luke & Remy Meier-Smith
Giant Factory Racing has announced its new lineup of riders for 2023 including the signing of Luke and Remy Meier-Smith.
The Giant team has expanded its focus to take on all three main World Cup disciplines with riders set to tackle XC, DH and Enduro races. The big signings for 2023 are Luke and Remy Meier-Smith joining from the Propain team with both riders looking to take on Downhill and Enduro World Cups. The XC team sees the biggest shakeup in terms of riders with Antoine Philipp being joined by fresh faces Jens Schuermans, Alexandre Balmer and Carter Woods.
Returning for 2023 Youn Deniaud and Mckay Vezina will continue racing enduro as they will now take on the newly formed Enduro World Cup series while Josh Carlson will be focusing on e-Enduro events. 2023 Giant Factory Off-Road Team:
- Alexandre Balmer (SUI), XC
- Josh Carlson (AUS), E-bike
- Youn Deniaud (FRA), Enduro
- Luke Meier-Smith (AUS), DH and Enduro
- Remy Meier-Smith (AUS), DH and Enduro
- Antoine Philipp (FRA), XC
- Jens Schuermans (BEL), XC
- Rémi Thirion (FRA), DH
- Mckay Vezina (CAN), Enduro
- Carter Woods (CAN), XC
Joe Connell Parts Ways with Orange
Joe Nation Leaves Pole
Maxime Marotte Joins the Rockrider Racing Team
Mille Johnset Leaves the Commencal 100% Team
After Joining in 2007 Jaroslav Kulhavy Leaves Specialized
Sam Pilgrim Signs with Canyon
Greg Minnaar Off Five Ten
Lars Forster Joins Thömus Maxon
Angel Suarez Off Commencal in 2023
Iago Garay Parts Ways with Santa Cruz After 10 Years
Kyle Strait Off Commencal
Carter Woods Leaves Norco After 3 Years
Nik Nestoroff Joins Fezzari
Amy Morrison Parts Ways with Polygon
Christopher Grice Leaves the Specialized Gravity Team but is Staying with Specialized
Mélanie Pugin Departs BH Bikes
Jesse Melamed Moves on from Rocky MountainPress Release: Rocky Mountain
Jesse Melamed has been riding Rocky Mountain his entire professional career. He’s landed nearly 20 Enduro World Series podiums, 12 of which are on the newest generation of the Altitude. Jesse has worked directly with our team to drive innovation for the Altitude, and it shows. We couldn’t be prouder of Jesse’s achievements with our bikes over the years.
This season, Jesse claimed the Enduro World Series Overall Champion title and, alongside teammates Remi Gauvin and Andreane Lantheir Nadeau, the 2nd Overall Enduro World Series Team title. But all good things come to an end. We bid farewell to Jesse as he moves on to a new team in 2023. We’re so proud of him, and wish him nothing but the best moving forward. To celebrate this remarkable athlete and all of his successes, we put a little edit together and compiled a collection of Jesse's notes from his rise to the top.
Jack Menzies Signs with Polygon BikesPress Release: Polygon
Young gun Jack Menzies has rapidly been making a name for himself on the EWS circuit. Only his first year as a professional racer, and already a regular top-ten finisher - we could not be prouder and more honored to have Jack join our Polygon Factory Racing Team.
The 21-year old Enduro racer from Squamish, Canada is seriously skilled and has a long list of credentials. Starting out in BMX racing as a youngster, Jack’s trajectory progressed through the ranks of Juniors to U21s, where he won an EWS round, and then on to Elites in 2022.
Jack Menzies will be joining team members Dan Wolfe, Matt Stuttard and Brady Stone - who yielded great results from the past season. Josh Morris, our mechanic for 2022 will be continuing on for 2023. A team manager and a second mechanic will also be joining the team to make the transition smooth.
Looking to build on the success of the team in 2023, Polygon will be partnering with top sports management company, 23 Degrees. Founded by Martin Whiteley, 23 Degrees has a stellar reputation for managing some of the world’s greatest mountain bike athletes and teams.
We can’t wait to see how the boys go in the first couple of rounds in Australia as the series graduates to full UCI World Cup status.
Mark Wallace Parts Ways with Canyon After 6 Years
The Canyon CLLCTV has announced another big departure for 2023 as Mark Wallace will be leaving the factory DH team after six years.
Hunt Bike Wheels Thanks Isla ShortWords: Hunt Bike Wheels
We started supporting Isla Short back in 2020 and feel honoured to have worked alongside someone with such an infectious personality & bundle of positive energy.
It’s been incredible to have been part of her journey to this point. From recording her best-ever World Cup XC results with an 11th in Nova Mesto in 2020, then matching that in Les Gets, 2021 (We all know a top 10 finish is just around the corner). She also became National champion in both Marathon and XCO disciplines and gained a 4th place at the 2022 Commonwealth Games for her beloved Scotland. If that wasn’t enough, the cherry on top was finishing 5th at the World Championships in Leogang, 2020.
Isla’s impact on our company runs much deeper than race results alone. With her attitude towards social issues and mental health to name a few, she has certainly influenced us to think more about the decisions we make and the impact they can have. Isla is a true ambassador for the sport and a role model for everyone around her.
In the 3 years we’ve worked with Isla, she has been invaluable in the testing and development of our products – none more so than for the recently launched Proven Carbon XC Race MTB wheels, which she raced for the first time at a muddy World Championships in 2020.
Sadly, we’ll be parting ways next season, but that won’t stop us cheering her on from the sidelines.
Photos by Attention Builders and Pete Scullion
Cube Factory Racing Signs Simon Chapelet
Cube has announced that Simon Chapelet will join its factory race team in 2023.
After racing World Cups as a privateer with the support of Cube France, Simon Chapelet will be moving up to the factory race team next season alongside Danny Hart and Max Hartenstern. Simon secured some great results this year with a 36th place finish in Lourdes and was the fastest privateer in Snowshoe with 28th position.
Jack Moir is Leaving the Canyon CLLCTV
The Canyon CLLCTV seems to have let slip that Jack Moir will be leaving the team as it releases a 'Best Of Metal Monday' to mark his departure.
Sam Blenkinsop Bids Farewell to Norco After 8 Years
After Norco paused
its racing teams for 2023 Sam Blenkinsop has officially announced he will be leaving the team.
Sam Blenkinsop has been a long-standing member of Norco's race team joining the brand back in 2015
. Sam's time with Norco has seen a King of Crankworx title, multiple national champs wins and top finishes at World Cup and EWS races.
The Norco teams are having a big shakeup for next year with only Gracey Hemstreet and Lucas Cruz confirmed for the team. Although there will be a new Elite male rider being added to the squad.
Joey Foresta Parts Ways with GT
After joining GT in 2009 while racing BMX Joey Foresta has announced he will be starting a new chapter in 2023.
Moving from BMX to racing World Cups and Dual Slalom Joey has stayed with GT as he has moved across disciplines although he says a new career chapter in 2023 will mean parting ways with the brand.
Lachlan Blair Announces Departure from Orange Factory RacingWords: Lachlan Blair
After two incredible years riding and racing for Orange Factory Racing and four years total riding Orange bikes, the time has come for us to go our separate ways. Huge thanks to everyone involved with OFR and at Orange who I have had the pleasure of working with over the years. It has been great to travel the world racing with such a fantastic group of people. There was never a dull moment being a part of a team as exciting as Orange Factory Racing. From magazine covers to racing successes, it has been a brilliant time riding for such an iconic company.
Heading into 2023 and beyond, I am really excited to be racing the full EWS series, Trans Madeira and some other races... I will be on a sharp new ride for next year, and I cannot wait to get it battling against the clock! Keep your eyes peeled for more news coming soon.
Veronika Widmann & Harry Molloy Part Ways with Madison Factory Racing
Veronika Widmann and Harry Molloy have announced that they will be leaving the Madison Saracen Factory racing team.
Both Veronika and Harry joined the team back in 2021 coming from the Insync Bikes and FS Racing teams. Over the past two seasons while Harry Molloy has been in an assistant manager role, Veronika Widmann has cemented herself as a top-level threat in World Cups with consistent top-ten finishes and eighth place at the World Champs in Les Gets.
Following this departure, the Madison Saracen team is left with just one rider as Matt Walker remains with the team at this time. We don't know what the teams' plans are for 2023 yet or if any additional riders with be added to the roster.
Jordan Williams Moves on from Madison Saracen
Junior World Champion Jordan Williams has announced that he will be heading to a new team as he moves up to Elites in 2023.
Jordan Williams had an extremely successful two years racing as a Junior regular going head to head against Jackson Goldstone and secured the title of Junior World Champion in Les Gets this year. After a successful period with Will Longden and the Madison Saracen team, he will be moving to a fresh setup in the new year.
Josh Lewis Parts Ways with Santa Cruz
After many years with Santa Cruz Josh Lewis has announced he will be finding new beginnings in 2023.
Charlie Harrison Announces Retirement from Professional Racing
Charlie Harrison has announced on social media that he will be stepping away from professional racing.
After six years racing World Cups and a tough couple of seasons Charlie Harrison has made the decision to step back from professional racing. Charlie says his priorities were moving away from World Cup racing to focusing on family and home life while struggling to keep his motivation for the sport. Since stepping away from racing Charlie says he is starting to rediscover his love for riding and is looking towards his next career.
Jakob Jewett Parts Ways with the Canyon CLLCTV
After joining the Canyon CLLCTV in 2020 Jakob Jewett has announced he will be leaving the team ahead of the 2023 season.
The young Canadian rider joined the main Canyon team in 2020 as a Junior and secured multiple top-ten finishes before shifting up to Elite this year. Jakob's 2022 season saw some top-ten finished in the downhill events at Crankworx Whistler as well as breaking inside the top 30 at the Snowshoe World Cup and coming 33rd for World Champs in Les Gets. In his social media post Jakob does say he has a new opportunity for next season although we will have to wait to find out what this may be.
Henrique Avancini Leaves Cannondale After 8 Years
After eight years of racing, it has been announced that Henrique Avancini will be leaving the Cannondale Factory Racing team for next year.
Since joining the team in 2014 Henrique Avancini has been at the front of World Cup XC racing and in his career has secured one World Cup win, nine World Cup podiums and is a 10 times National Champ. Following such a long and successful period with Cannondale, it will be interesting to see where the Brazilian rider ends up next.
Propain Pauses its Factory Race Team for 2023
Propain will not be putting a factory team together for the 2023 season.
Following Norco's announcement in October
that it would be skipping next year's racing Propain has come forward to say it will be taking a break from having a factory team in 2023 although it sounds like there could be a return in the future.
The pausing of the team means Henry Kerr, Luke Meier-Smith and Remy Meier-Smith could be on the hunt for a new team although Propain has said "it is a matter of course to us that we care about our team members and keep them on track for 2023 with our connections to industry partners and co."
It is sad to see another high-profile team pulling out of next year's racing and we hope there won't be too much more of this news to come.
Max Hartenstern Extends Contract with Cube Factory Racing
The Cube Factory Racing team has announced on social media that Max Hartenstern will be continuing with the team in future race seasons.
Max has already been with the team for six years achieving third at the 2017 Junior World Champs, second at the 2021 Les Gets World Cup and five Elite German National champ titles. The announcement doesn't mention how long the contract has been extended for, but it does state he has signed "for many more years" suggesting it could be a larger extension.
The 2023 team lineup hasn't been fully confirmed yet but Danny Hart has been doing off-season testing with the team. Interestingly the team are currently looking to hire a third mechanic for the team suggesting they may be adding another rider for next year.
Pauline Ferrand Prevot Officially Signs with Ineos Grenadiers
We heard rumours
that Pauline Ferrand Prevot could be signing with Ineos Grenadiers last week, and now the rumour has been confirmed.
Pauline Ferrand Prevot signed a two-year contract with Absolute Absalon
in January of 2021 and met with success on the world stage once again after several years of struggling with low power in her left leg due to iliac endofibrosis
She finished her 2022 season with four World Championships titles in a row in XCC, XCO, XCM and Gravel. Now, we have confirmation that she will be riding for Ineos Grenadiers for the next two years, targeting gold at the Paris Olympics in her home country in 2024.
Jamie Edmondson Parts Ways With the RockShox Trek Race Team
Jamie Edmondson has announced on social media that after two years he will be leaving the RockShox Trek Race Team.
The past two seasons with the RockShox Trek Race Team has seen Jamie secure some great results with top 30 finishes at World Cup races while also winning three U21 EWS races and taking two second-place finishes.
Lachlan Blair Joins Deviate Cycles
Edinburgh-based Lachlan Blair will be riding for Deviate Cycles in 2023, taking on the newly titled UCI Mountain Bike Enduro World Cup, the Trans Madeira and some DH races to boot.
Most people will know Lachlan for his DH background and as a member of the Dudes of Hazzard alongside Joe Barnes. Following a crash in Leogang back in 2017 and the inception of the Hazzard Racing team in 2019, Lachlan switched focus to Enduro.
Lachlan’s racing season kicks off with the Tasmanian rounds of the UCI EDR where he’ll be joined by fellow Deviate rider Matthew Fairbrother.