CANYON//SRAM Racing will be starting a development team as part of its diversity and inclusion program. Set to launch in 2022, the team will be in addition to the CANYON//SRAM Racing Women’s WorldTeam. Rider recruitment focus will be on, but not limited to, Africa, Asia, and South America.
This two-tier structure will be the first of its kind for a European-based WorldTeam, creating a formal pathway to the Women’s World Tour.
The squad will be a UCI Continental Team. Scholarships will be offered to eight riders, and will include supervised training, coaching, mentorship, and stagiaire opportunities at CANYON//SRAM Racing. Off the bike, riders will also enter the team’s Diversity and Inclusion program.
Ronny Lauke, Founder and Team Manager at CANYON//SRAM Racing: “Since the beginning of CANYON//SRAM Racing we were always motivated to create opportunities for women from all over the globe to enter the sport of professional women’s cycling. We focused on transferring the latest performance knowledge and science from our staff and partners so athletes can become the best version of themselves. We also looked at unique pathways to enter the sport. With Zwift, we started the CANYON//SRAM Zwift Academy and every year we have motivated more women to compete for the available spot on our team and are convinced this has had a positive impact on the growing numbers of female cyclists. We have understood that we need to do more and are excited to be able to present the CANYON//SRAM Racing development team. With this team we are opening another unique pathway that talents from countries that are underrepresented in the women’s peloton can use and receive full support on a daily basis. We are very much looking forward to this new chapter and are confident that our impact and help to lower entry barriers and to give the sport a change will motivate many more women to enter the beautiful sport of cycling.”
Christine Kalkschmid, CANYON//SRAM Racing’s Team Development and Diversity and Inclusion expert: “At CANYON//SRAM Racing our goal is not only to become more diverse and inclusive as a team. We want to make an impact to the sport of cycling. Cycling in general and professional women‘s cycling, in particular, is not accessible for many women around the world. Our goal is to make the sport diverse and inclusive by developing and fostering promising talents that currently have no or only limited access to cycling.”
The team will release further details in the upcoming weeks.