Peter Stetina and Amity Rockwell are amongst an all-star solid of professional riders opening the US gravel racing calendar on February 27 when Low Hole opens the Grasshopper Journey Sequence in northern California. They may tackle a 48-mile course from Todd Grove Park in Ukiah, California, with 6,664 toes of elevation acquire, nearly all of dust, or mud, and climbing packed into the ultimate 22 miles.
Stetina, final yr’s Low Hole professional males’s winner, can be joined by Tyler Williams (Miami Nights), who was third final yr, Ian Lopez de San Roman, fifth final yr, and Brennan Wertz (Mosaic Cycles), who was second in 2022. Former WorldTour professional Levi Leipheimer, who lives in Olympic Valley, California, and Canadian cross-country mountain bike rider Geoff Kabush will even make a begin with the professional males.
Along with Rockwell, who was fourth in 2022, there’s a robust subject of professional ladies, all primarily based in California, led by multi-discipline rider and Olympian Katerina Nash, who gained the 2021 Belgian Waffle Trip in California. Additionally anticipated to begin are Six Sigma Hopper winner Flavia Oliveira Parks, Anna Yamauchi, Alison Tetrick (Specialised) and 2023 podium finishers Niky Taylor and Maude Farrell (Pivot / Easton / Pas Regular Studios), second and third, respectively.
Organisers of Low Hole nonetheless had spots open for the collection initially of the week, with all juniors receiving a customary 50% low cost. It’s the twenty seventh yr for the Grasshopper Sequence and Sportful returns as a sponsor for a fourth consecutive version.
The fourth occasion within the collection, Ukiah Mendo Epic on Could 11, is among the races added this season to the worldwide Gravel Earth Sequence, the place Rockwell completed second total within the elite ladies’s standings.
Roxo Racing rebrands to Boneshaker Mission p/b Orange Seal
Roxo Racing, which started as a home elite crew for girls in 2021, returns for a second season on the Continental stage and can rebrand as Boneshaker Mission p/b Orange Seal.
Whereas the identify of the crew modified for the 2024 season, the 12-rider roster will proceed to be anchored by Canadian Emily Marcolini. She’ll be supported by returning US riders Marjie Bemis, Jaime Larmer, Jacqueline Larouche and Kira Payer in addition to Canadian Ariane Bonhomme, Mexican riders Ana Belen Garza and Romina Hinojosa.
New to the crew are Canadians Ngaire Barraclough, who was a two-time U23 ITT nationwide champion, and Kiara Lylyk, who took the bronze within the 2023 Collegiate MTB Nationwide Championships. Additionally becoming a member of are three-time Mexican time trial champion Andrea Ramirez and Colombian Karen Villamizar, who had a trio of second-place finishes eventually yr’s Vuelta Guatemala Femenina and was fourth of GC at each Vuelta Colombia and Vuelta Costa Rica.
The 28-year-old Marcolini had her largest yr in 2022 at DNA Professional Biking, the place she gained phases at Redlands Bicycle Basic and Tour of the Gila, was within the prime 10 of the GC at each races in addition to Joe Martin Stage Race. She crashed out of the Tour of Colombia the final two years and took time without work in 2023 to heal fully from varied lacerations and a mind damage.
The ladies’s Boneshaker squad was invited to associate once more with US males’s home elite-level Voler Manufacturing unit Racing p/b Schnur squad for a second season of the NCL Cup Sequence. They plan to start the 2024 season on the Valley of the Solar Stage Race and the Tucson Bicycle Basic stage race.
Three Canadians be part of Purple Walters at XSpeed United
Purple Walters, who earned a stagiaire spot on the Axeon growth squad three years in the past courtesy of Giro d’Italia winner Tao Geoghegan Hart, returns for a second season on the Canadian males’s Continental squad, XSpeed United.
In 2021, he hit the highlight as the highest candidate to safe a spot with Hagens Berman Axeon through funding offered by Geoghegan Hart, who started his profession with the event crew and wished to extend racial range in professional biking.
Walters, who has twice swept the Grenadian highway and time trial nationwide championships, can be joined in 2024 by seven North People on the Canadian crew in addition to seven European riders.
Among the many new Canadian riders on the crew are 18-year-old highway and monitor rider David Olejniczak, 21-year-old off-road rider Eric Berg and 27-year-old time trialist Declan Kelly. Zak Coleman of Nice Britain and Leo Doyle of Eire have additionally been added.