Team BikeExchange Jayco has confirmed their official name and full roster of men for 2022, saying they are looking to rebuild themselves and “focus on generalized wins” in their 11th season at WorldTour level.
The men’s and women’s teams will be known as BikeExchange Jayco, with the Australian recreational vehicle brand on board for 2022 and longtime team owner Gerry Ryan continuing to support the team.
The Aussie team were on the verge of closing a 50 percent sponsorship and ownership deal with Canadian firm Premier Tech, but Ryan preferred to keep control of the team. He made a similar decision in 2020 when a deal with unrecognized Manuela Fundación was cut short at the last minute. This led to an upheaval in the management of the team, with Brent Copeland replacing Shayne Bannan.
The WorldTour men’s team has enjoyed consistent success over the years, but their number of wins dropped to nine in 2021. Their position in the UCI rankings followed a similar trajectory, dropping from 11th in 2020 to 18th.
Michael Matthews and Simon Yates remain team leaders for 2022, with a number of new hires and changes made to strengthen the squad. They will have a roster of 28 riders for the new season, with 11 Australian riders.
“With our team owner Gerry Ryan, who is deeply involved in these important team decisions, I truly believe that we did a detailed analysis of last season and are confident that the decisions were made in the best possible way. interest of the team, both in terms of rider selection as well as the team’s goals and ambitions, ”said Copeland, who explained the difficulties of the 2021 season in a recent interview with Cycling news.
The seven new signings include Lawson Craddock and Matteo Sobrero, who beat Filippo Ganna on a hilly course to win the Italian time trial title, mountain biker Alex Balmer, talented young Spanish rider Jesus David Peña and young Australians Kelland. O’Brien and Campbell Stewart. .
Chief athletic director Matt White said the changes in the team’s roster mean changes in the team’s ambitions.
“We have traditionally been a team that won races in our roster from January through October and never relied on a single star to get the majority of our victories. We didn’t make it in 2021 and that’s an area we will be focusing on again in 2022, ”White said.
“The Grand Tours are of course very important goals, especially with leaders like Simon Yates and Michael Matthews, but in this phase of rebuilding, winning races anywhere and everywhere is also crucial. With these changes to the mind, we are going to change some of our goals for the coming season, and that also means adjusting our racing style when necessary. “
A familiar core but a few new faces
The core of the team again includes Luke Durbridge, Alex Edmondson, Jack Bauer, Michael Hepburn, Damien Howson, Chris Juul-Jensen, Cameron Meyer, Luka Mezgec and Nick Schultz. The team is expected to switch from Bianchi bikes to Giant bikes by 2022.
Esteban Chaves moved to EF Education-Nippo, Brent Bookwalter retired and Rob Stannard moved to Alpecin-Fenix. Mikel Nieve has yet to confirm his future plans.
“We have a mix of young talent and experienced hands coming into the squad next year,” White said.
“In terms of experience we are losing some of our older experienced guys so replacing them with the right people was crucial. One is Lawson Craddock, who is renowned for being a reliable teammate on a variety of terrains. many years of experience, World Tour experience but will also have the opportunity to challenge yourself for personal goals.
“Matteo Sobrero, who pulled off one of the biggest time-trial surprises of the year by beating world champion Filippo Ganna to win the Italian championships, also joins us with the WorldTour pedigree as a support rider for the great leaders of the general classification We also believe that Matteo can continue to reach new personal heights with us to move forward.
“With two young world class track drivers in Kelland O’Brien and Campbell Stewart, we are going to move them through the ranks of the WorldTour on the road and they have been specifically brought in to work with Kaden Groves, our developing sprint star. To have a youngster, to develop the speed train around Kaden in a consistent way, with riders of the same age who can learn and win together, this is an area that we see as a great opportunity for us to achieve victories in 2022.
“Alex Balmer and Jesus David Peña are obviously great young talents, Balmer will continue at the highest level in the mountain bike world while continuing to develop as a world class road racer. Peña comes to us with little European exposure. , largely due to COVID restrictions in his first two years out of the junior ranks, but we’ll help assimilate him into the European scene and we really believe in his raw talent.
“Our final signing is Jan Maas, another rider that we are delighted to have on board and to continue his development. He has a lot of experience at the continental level, and I am sure he will be of great value in the mountains. in key races next year. “