Online retailer Chain Reaction Cycles and Intense Cycles are sponsoring a new downhill team in 2008. The four man squad will consist of long standing Intense rider Chris Kovarik (Australia), world junior DH champion Ruaridh Cunningham (Scotland), Julien Camellini (France) and Matt Simmonds (England). It will be managed by masters world champion Nigel Page.
"I am very excited about this new team and my role as team manager," said Page. "Chain Reaction Cycles have shown great vision to back a world beating DH team. My long relationship with Intense has been key to putting this team together and I am very pleased that we will be using the M6 frame.
"I could not have wished for a better group of riders and I am confident that my experience as a rider/racer will help us get the best out of this great team. Chris was an obvious choice as he was ready for a team change but wanted to continue riding an Intense - his experience will also help the young riders. Ruaridh, Julien and Matt have shown that they are all very fast. Within this team they will be able to continue their development and I am confident there will be many podiums for ChainReactionCycles/Intense".
The team will be based just outside of Morzine in France and will compete in all the major events, including the UCI world cup series and - it hopes - the world championships, as well as selected British NPS, French Cup and Avalanche Trophy races. Their season will open with the Sea Otter Classic.
The riders will be using Intense Frames, Manitou Forks, Cane Creek Double Barrel shocks, Hayes Brakes, Sun Wheels, Royal Race gear, Maxxis tires, 661 Protection, E13, and Burgtec components as well as Blackmarket Hardtails.