February 4, 2009 (Northvale, NJ) – The new Team Jamis Factory Racing squad will focus on cross country races, all-mountain, endurance and mountain bike festivals in North America, Central, and South America. The new cross country squad will compliment the already highly successful Jamis Gravity program.
Anchoring the squad is 2x Canadian Olympian, Commonwealth Games medalist, and former NORBA STXC champion Seamus McGrath.
McGrath is returning to North American racing with Team Jamis following his successful 2008 season, twice placing in the World Cup top 10, in addition to representing Canada in Bejing at the Olympics last summer.
McGrath is joined by former Canadian National team member Chris Sheppard. Sheppard had a successful 2008 season, winning stages at both the BC Bike Race and the Trans Rockies. For 2009, he will be targeting the US national series and epic single day events, such as the Downieville Classic and the Fruita Fat Tire Festival, in addition to partnering with McGrath for the BC Bike Race and Intermontaine Race in British Columbia.
Also new to the factory team are Blake Harlan and team manager/athlete Jason Sager. Sager brings several wins to the team including a stage from 2008’s BC Bike race, endurance and UCI wins in Puerto Rico, including Rincon’s Ultimate Dirt Challenge. Harlan, new to the professional ranks, is poised for another stellar season, and will target Colorado’s Mountain State Cup events in addition to the team’s national series.
Says McGrath “I’m excited to be returning from the last couple of years’ worth of European racing with great support, familiar teammates, and it’s shaping up to be a great year – the bikes are better than ever. I think the new series will bring the return of excitement and high level competition to the US.”
Utilizing the latest in product technology, Team Jamis’ primary race weapon will be the full suspension high modulus carbon fiber Dakar XCR, outfitted with Edge Composites XC UL Tubular wheels with Geax tubular Saguro tires, Chris King hubs, and Fox suspension systems.
“This has been a true collaborative effort” says team manager, Sager. “Working with mtb product manager Craig Hoyt and Jamis President Carine Joannou has proven to be a hands-on and family effort in picking the riders, equipment, and our schedule.” Hoyt could hardly contain his excitement for the new year. “We’ve always had the best bikes, now they’re going to be under the fastest riders.” said Hoyt, regarding the new squad.
Team Jamis will be supported in their adventures and racing conquests by Jamis Bikes, Geax Tires, Edge Composites wheels stems, seat posts, and handle bars, Chris King hubs, Fox Shox, Gore RideOn Systems, WTB saddles and grips, Hayes Brakes, Crank Brothers, FSA, Shimano, and Clif Bar.