The TORQ Performance Mountain Bike Team is now in its 9th year of racing on the UK Domestic Race Scene. The team was officially launched back 2006 (Click here for a look back in history) and has since grown into one of the most established top performing, Domestic teams on the UK circuit.
For 2015 the team’s mission remains the same. “To unite some of the country’s most accomplished Mountain Bike racers into a team with unrivalled strength and depth and to set an example to everyone involved in the sport that high-end performances are achieved in symbiosis with generosity of spirit, courtesy and integrity.”
Rider Line Up
It is always with sadness that we say goodbye to riders who have worked hard to represent the team. There is no doubt that racing at the top end takes its toll, both mentally and physically, and requires a significant level of commitment. None of the riders on our team are full time professional athletes; they race because they love the sport, often alongside significant work and family commitments.
For 2015 we say goodbye to Ruby Miller, Ed McParland, John Hopkinson, and Neal Crampton. Ruby Miller has been with the team for the past 3 years and for 2015 she will join the Hargrove’s Cycles Racing team with her partner Steven James, where she will also change her focus to Cyclo-Cross Racing. Ed McParland has joined the All Terrain Cycles Road Racing team to allow him to participate in some regional road races (which we are sure he will excel at) and to dedicate further time to his Dentistry Degree. After an impressive string of results in 2014, Jon Hopkinson, one of the biggest characters on the circuit, bids farewell to the competitive side of the sport. After taking the National Marathon title in 2013, Neal Crampton is now looking to focus on fell running, in a bid to free up some time with the imminent arrival of his first child with partner Jo. We wish each and every rider all our best for the future and thank them for their time and dedication.
The legendary Lydia Gould, our longest serving rider and last remaining from our original line up in 2006, will be stepping down from our Performance team, but will continue to represent TORQ via our Development Team. Lydia won her respective age group title at the National Cyclo Cross Championships back at the start of January and certainly shows no signs of slowing down! Later on in the season, we will also see Emily Iredale making a comeback to racing, after the arrival of her daughter at the end of last year.
We are pleased to announce that, Joanne Clay, Carla Haines, Chris Andrews, Lee Westwood, Alex Welburn and John Pybus will all be continuing with the team and are proud to announce the signing of Jules Toones, Lee Gratton, Richard Dunnett and Sarah Murray for 2015.
Lee joins the team from the Trek Coventry Racing Team. We’ve watched Lee coming up through the ranks into the Elite category with interest, and were suitably impressed by his 10th place finish in the 2014 National XC Championships. Lee’s focus will be on XC racing and he will join our already strong line-up of riders in the Elite category.
Richard Dunnett joins the team from the TORQ Fuelled, City College Norfolk Team. Rich is the current National 24 hour Solo Champion and finished 2nd in the 2014 Trans Continental Race and the 2013 World Cycle Race, so is certainly not shy to racking up the miles! Rich will be focusing on the endurance side of things and plans to race at the World Championships, alongside racing XC in the Expert Category.
Jules Toones – blew us away with her riding in the Midlands XC series in 2014 and achieved some solid results in the National Series too. 2015 will be Jules’ first full season in the Elite category and we look forward to seeing what she can achieve.
Sarah Murray – Has raced at the highest level in Cyclo Cross for Cyclo Cross Magazine, with some impressive results in the National Cyclo Cross Trophy. This will be Sarah’s first year racing in the Elite category and if her Cyclo Cross results are anything to go by, we are sure she will complement our already strong Elite female riders.
As a team, we aim to develop lasting relationships with all of our sponsors and therefore 2015 sees little change to the team supporters. We are proud and privileged to announce the continued partnerships with.
Whyte Bikes – 29C Carbon Framesets
Schwalbe – Tyres and Tubeless Equipment
Exposure Lights – Advanced Lighting – TORQ’s longest serving sponsors!
SR Suntour – Suspension Forks
Altura – Team Clothing
Limar – Ultra light Helmets
Lake – Race Shoes
Jagwire – Cables & Housing
Lezyne – Pumps, Saddlebags, Tools & Bottle Cages
Fenwick’s Bike – Cleaning and Lubrication
Shimano – Drivetrain and Brakes
Tifosi – Optics
Raceware – Custom Mounts
Camelbak – Race Bottles
Odd Designs – Bike Racks
For 2015 we are pleased to welcome.
USE – Carbon Finishing Kits
Dry Robe – Changing Robes
Sealskinz – Waterproof Socks, hats and overshoes
Stages – Power Meters
Hope Technology – Wheels
The team, alongside the TORQ Brand will be fully represented at the majority of UK Cross Country and Endurance events including.
British National XC Series
Scott Marathon Series
TORQ In Your Sleep
National Marathon Championships and National XC Championships
Cycle Show 2015
This will be in combination with a number of other regional XC and marathon events, including the Midlands XC Series, Altura Nutcracker XC Series and Gorrick Series.
We speak on behalf of the riders when we say we are eager to get racing and look forward to seeing everyone on the start line soon. For all the latest updates on the team, please,join us on Facebook and follow the TORQ Twitter feed.