Sho-Air TWENTY20 has announced the signings of Olympian and two-time World Championship medalist Lea Davison, and U23 USA National Champion Savilia Blunk to the program’s mountain bike division. Sho-Air TWENTY20 has for many years housed talent in the mountain bike, gravel, and adventure sectors, including multi-time Leadville Champion Larissa Connors, who raced for many years with the program. The signings of Davison and Blunk align with the recent announcement of the strengthened partnership with Sho-Air International, who has been instrumental in building the mountain bike race calendar in the United States.
“I am completely thrilled to lead the Sho-Air TWENTY20 mountain bike division,” said Davison. “Our goals align perfectly. I am working really hard towards the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, and this team is centered on Olympic aspirations. With this synergy, I really believe that together we can do some amazing things. Scott Tedro and Sho-Air have been instrumental in putting energy and life into high-level mountain bike racing in the United States over the last decade. I feel very grateful that Sho-Air and Team TWENTY20 are giving me the opportunity to get after my goals and high aspirations in the sport. It's extremely encouraging and motivating when someone really believes in you.”
Davison’s high-performance history and her passion for getting more girls on bikes through the Little Bellas program (co-founded with her sister Sabra Davison and Angela Irvine) align well with the TWENTY20 ethos of empowering girls and women through the sport.
“When long-time friend and colleague Julia Violich proposed the Mountain bike team project to me, I immediately recognized the exciting opportunity to get back to my roots,” said Nicola Cranmer, General Manager, TWENTY20 Pro Cycling. “I was fortunate to have moved to the United States in 1986 when mountain biking was still in its embryonic stages, racing for WTB and, eventually, Proflex. I experienced the meteoric rise of the sport well into the 90s.”
Blunk joins the program and brings her energy and goal-oriented passion to further develop the mountain bike program at Sho-Air TWENTY20. The California native has grown up riding, entering her first race at 12 years of age.
"I'm so excited to be a part of the Sho-Air TWENTY20 pro team alongside one of my biggest role models in the sport,” said Blunk. “I'm incredibly lucky for the opportunity to grow with the inspiring women on this team and I can't wait to be one of the first to represent Sho-Air TWENTY20 on dirt!”
Headlining the mountain bike support for TWENTY20 are Sho-Air International, TWENTY20, Violich Farms and Louis Garneau, Colavita Cares, Praxis, Power2Max, DT Swiss, Felt Bicycles and SRAM. The mountain bike division will be riding Felt bikes, with the team says is the ideal partner for a multi-dimensional program such as theirs.
“It's a great opportunity to ride Felt bikes,” said Davison. “Felt is a part of Rossignol. I grew up downhill ski racing in Vermont, and Rossignol was my very first sponsor. I had Olympic aspirations back then on skis, and I didn't know at that time that two wheels would make my dreams come true. Being able to ride a bike that is connected to my very first sponsor and where my original Olympic dream was born feels like things are truly coming full circle for me. I'm really riding the perfect World Cup race machine.”
TWENTY20 says that both Sho-Air International and Felt Bicycles have been instrumental in the team’s success, garnering five Olympic and Paralympic gold medals, five Olympic silver medals, three bronze medals, numerous world championship titles, countless world cup medals, and numerous national championship victories. They not only support the high performance of athletes but also have a clear mission to support the future of the sport. While their eyes are keenly focused on Tokyo 2020, the program is looking forward to continued expansion into multiple disciplines.
The TWENTY20 mountain bike athletes will kick off their season in early March in Puerto Rico, then head to the two US Cup events, followed by the Sea Otter Classic. May will see the women head to Europe for the UCI World Cup events in Germany, Czech Republic, and Poland.
Brandon McNulty Il Giro di Sicilia in spectacular fashion on Saturday, with Rally UHC Cycling successfully defending his leader’s jersey on the legendary slopes of Mt Etna. McNulty finished fourth on the final stage after his teammates, one by one, sacrificed themselves en route to the greatest GC triumph in team history.
With tough early season contests in Spain and Oman under their belt, Rally UHC Cycling enters a second block of European racing with renewed strength and confidence. The team lands in Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport Friday for a five-week campaign that begins in France and ends with England’s Tour de Yorkshire.
Whether you’re a seasoned veteran of cross-country mountain bike racing, or you’re looking to try your hand at your very first off-road race, your primary concern will undoubtedly be which bike to ride. Should you choose a full-suspension bike with both a suspension fork and a rear shock, or a hardtail with only a suspension fork?
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