The departure of Pauline Ferrand-Prévot from Canyon-SRAM left a space on Canyon’s roster for another big name fast XCO rider, so it may not be a surprise that Emily Batty will be joining Canyon.
Though Batty’s record is more narrowly focussed than Ferrand-Prévot’s, it’s still a top notch list of XCO titles which includes four Canadian National Championship titles, two third-place overall World Cup rankings, and two World Championship bronze medals. There’s no Olympic podium there yet – though she competed in 2012 despite a broken collar bone, and came fourth in 2016. Will there be an Olympics this year to make another attempt?
Of the year ahead, Emily Batty says:
“Last season, everything was so unknown, and I didn’t want to waste valuable mental and physical capacity in 2020 without knowing races were for sure happening. So, while my performances could have been way better, I feel like I’m going into 2021 more hungry, rested, and motivated than most of my competitors. And now, I have some huge goals I’m very excited about: I have Olympics, World Championships, and World Cup goals. I want to go big on the performance side of things this year.”
From the press release, it seems that Canyon is looking for input beyond race results – probably wise given ongoing uncertainty over what racing there will actually be:
‘“Emily is a fantastic addition to the Canyon family – both for her ability on the bike as well as what she brings in terms of her personality”, enthuses Canyon CEO Armin Landgraf. “I am convinced that, with all her experience, she won’t only perform when it’s race time – she’ll also provide us with valuable feedback that we can use in the further development of our bikes.”
‘Emily shares his enthusiasm on this side of her role, explaining: “My new Canyon bikes are amazing. The Exceed and the Lux are both so well-balanced from front to back, and I can push them without losing the front wheel. Canyon is already looking for my feedback, and I feel like I finally have a voice and stake in how the product is developed.”’
With so much disruption to racing, brand values and contributions beyond the race tape are becoming ever more in focus. The press release details that Emily is also motivated by factors beyond racing:
“It was time for a change, and I’ve learned that it takes so much more than just equipment and infrastructure to continue making progress in our sport. The very first time I visited Canyon headquarters, Roman Arnold had me over for lunch with his family at his home. I already feel so welcomed, aligned with their values, and connected to the brand. Everyone is in my corner, and they are forward-thinking and innovative. When you see it in person, meet the people, and experience their company culture, you quickly realize they are as good as it gets.” – Emily Batty
The press release concludes that further information on the Canyon team set up will be released shortly. It will be interesting to see what the full line up is. Will Emily be joined by a whole new line up of XCO team riders? Or will there be a more diverse array of riders, bringing a breadth of experience and focus to the team, and potentially a broader fan base to the brand?
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