Giant’s mountain bike team sponsorship is growing considerably this year. The company will now support two mountain bike teams—Rabobank-Giant and the Giant Factory Team. Each team will bring together some of cycling's brightest stars in disciplines ranging from cyclocross to slopestyle.
Team Rabobank-Giant will include the likes of Adam Craig along with new talents Emil Lindren of Sweden, Fabian Giger of Switzerland and Henk Jaap Moorlag of the Netherlands. This group of riders will focus on a year-round, global calendar featuring cross-country races in the summer and cyclocross races in the winter.
Craig commented on the new team, "From an athlete's standpoint, it's the ideal setup. There are certain similarities between cross-country mountain biking and cyclocross, and there's always some athlete crossover between the two disciplines. So structuring it under one team makes sense."
In addition to the Rabobank squad, the Giant Factory team will also be present at this season's biggest competitions. New recruits include two-time U.S. Downhill Champion Duncan Riffle, and 18 year old British phenom Danny Hart. Hart was the winner of 2009's World Cup DH Junior series, and earned a bronze in the 2009 World Junior DH Championships.
Canadian Kurt Sorge, 21, will be competing at freeride and slopestyle events, and decorated Aussie Jared Rando will round out the gravity events with DH and slalom. Rando will also help with product development.
On the cross-country side of things, former national champions Carl Decker and Kelli Emmet will continue racing on the North American scene, while Brit Oli Beckingsale will focus on races in Europe.