Nailed it – the new GT Factory Racing Team

Today saw the announcement of the new look GT Factory Racing team.

GT just nailed it.

The line up with be 7 heavy weight, World-class downhill and enduro racers made up of Wyn Masters, Sam Dale, Anneke Beerten, Marin Maes, Jackson Frew and Rachel Throop.

Brook, Sam, Wyn and Jackson will race DH and Martin, Anneke, Rachel and Wyn (he’s going to be busy!) will race enduro.

Here’s why we think GT have nailed it with their new line up … 

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The new team is obviously a stellar line up of riders with an amazing CV of results. But that’s not really why GT just scored a massive win with their new team. The magic formula that GT just injected is, of course … personality.

GT’s top team from 2012 to 2015 was GT Factory Racing – basically Atherton Racing with some surrogates. In so many ways it was the perfect team. They have an amazing level of professionalism, they’re totally uncompromising in their hunt for results and they have a great support network behind the athletes. The riders themselves are of course near perfect racers. If you want to dominate races and have plenty of budget, Atherton racing isn’t a bad shout.

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Does that come at a cost? It’s fair to say that the Athertons have a ‘head down’ approach to racing. They’re nice guys but you’ll rarely see a Raw Edit of Gee blowing tyres off his rims or Dan savaging his local trail. We had the excellent Atherton Project – but these days it seems to be about podiums rather than people.  And that’s fine, that’s their thing and it works.

What gets the fans stoked these days? Is it World Cup victors? Maybe. But aren’t we all a little guilty of favouring the underdog and rejecting the guy that constantly dominates the field? We all love it when Josh Bryceland battles against injury and scores a one-off victory – but it’s different when Gwin or Gee (or back in time) Nico win every race. So whilst the Athertons are a force to win races – it feels like it’s the up and coming’ers, the came second’ers and the must-go-faster’ers that the fans really go mad for.

Do we even care about top results or do we want to watch wild as all hell riders shooting videos outside of racing? Videos that are stuffed with near-death crashes, laughter, skids, wheelies and a glimpse at the pro-lifestyle? Is that really what makes us like a rider and maybe buy the bike they ride?

So whilst the new look GT team might not have race-after-race-after-race winners it has the magic formula of guys and girls that we’re stoked to see ride. They’re great to watch, we’ll click ‘play’ on their videos and we’ll be cheering at the live stream when they leave the hut. A team built around fast, likeable, great to watch riders – crazy huh?

What do you think of the new GT Team? Tell us over on Twitter.


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