Swiss 4X and BMX racer Roger Rinderknecht has been dropped by GT after four years on their team and is looking for a new bike sponsor.
His departure comes after former 4X world champion Jill Kintner and her partner, Australian downhiller and 4X racer Bryn Atkinson, were axed from the squad last year. A year earlier, multiple 4X and dual slalom world champion Brian Lopes was summarily dropped from the team after seven years.
According to a press release issued by the Rasolution agency, in future GT plan to focus on downhill racing – where they are represented by Australian Mick Hannah and Britain’s Marc Beaumont – rather than 4X.
GT say they regret losing Rinderknecht but insist his contract “could not be renewed” due to budget cuts caused by the global financial downturn.
Rinderknecht, who has finished second at two World Championships (2006 and 2008) and has graced countless World Cup podiums, said: “I felt really comfortable with GT and regret this decision. At this point, I want to thank everybody at GT for the time we shared. But the whole thing is also a big chance for me. I am looking forward to next year and the new challenges.”
Rinderknecht is looking for a new bike but will retain his long-term sponsors Oakley, IXS, Onza, SR Suntour and DT Swiss. He plans to continue competing on the World Cup 4X circuit and hopes to qualify to ride BMX at the 2010 Olympics in London.