January 6, 2009 – Earlier this week, the U.S.-based Trek Bicycle Corporation announced that it will disband the very successful Trek-VW MTB Team after a legendary 13 seasons, which included rosters studded with Canadian stars Alison Sydor and Roland Green. More recently, the XC team was headed by Jeremiah Bishop (USA) and Susan Haywood (USA), with a bright future promised by up-and-comer Lea Davison (USA). Trek-VW also supported six regional teams. Pedal caught up with Trek’s MTB Global Brand Manager, Michael Browne, to find out what was behind the decision.
The Trek-Volkswagen Team was very successful – why is it not continuing?
Michael Browne: VW decided not to renew their sponsorship. Without their support, the program cannot continue.
There were six Trek-Volkswagen regional teams with 4-10 riders – are they all disbanded as well?
MB: Select riders will continue representing Trek.
Trek’s Global Racing cross-country and gravity-racing team recently signed Tracey Moseley – is this signaling a change in Trek’s overall marketing strategy?
MB: Trek’s goal is to produce the best mountain bikes, from cross country to DH. We believe that racing at the World Cup level not only proves the performance of those bikes, but it’s also a great place to learn about how to improve those bikes. Tracey Moseley is part of our strategy to field a comprehensive team that’s equally competitive in DH as it is in XC – something the world has not seen in years.
We understand 24 Hour Champ Chris Eatough is continuing with Trek with one year left in his contract – what are Trek’s plans for the domestic racing scene?
MB: Domestic racing will be handled by Chris Eatough and a select number of athletes retained from the old VW program.
All the best in 2009.