In Flanders, cycling is sacred. For every road, there is a bike route running right alongside it. So, what better tribute to this region's culture of cycling than the Tour of Flanders?
It’s official: the new Wilier Triestina – Pirelli Factory Team launches today with the very specific aim of placing Made in Italy excellence at the top of world mountain bike racing.
The Wilier Triestina-Pirelli project combines two names that represent Italian excellence in the cycling sector to create much more than just a team: it’s a dream of bringing an Italian team back to the top rungs of international MTB racing, in both cross country and long distances.
The Wilier Triestina – Pirelli Factory Team continues the outstanding work carried out in past years by team manager Marco Trentin, with the added bonus of new athletes and, notably, new partners who recognised the value of the Wilier Triestina – Pirelli project from the outset.
A group consisting of 8 riders among which stand out the tricoloured jerseys of Italian champions Fabian Rabensteiner and Giada Specia, the Belgian champion Wout Alleman, but also the rich prize lists of Daniel Geismayr, Samuele Porro, Simone Avondetto, Gioele De Cosmo and Janis Baumann.
“The past few seasons for our team have been truly exciting, with great results on the international level and, above all, with young athletes who have grown and achieved, together with us, high degrees of success. Having reached that level, we felt it was the right time to go one step further and become a Factory Team. Thanks to Wilier Triestina, we now have this opportunity and, with the immense confidence of our long-time partners, namely Pirelli, Tonello and Autovega, in the next 3 years, we will be pursuing big and ambitious goals. We want to leave our mark on the international scene and I believe that we have what it takes to do it.
We will be going into the XCO World Cup with a team that, despite the young age, includes the best future talents. With the Marathon team we are ready to reap the rewards of many years of hard work and once again put ourselves at the forefront among the world’s top teams, not only in one-day long-distance competitions but also and above all in the more prestigious stage races.
We couldn’t be more excited about starting this adventure alongside Wilier Triestina, also because the entire company has welcomed us from the very start as part of the family. My people and I are looking forward to reciprocating the confidence that has been shown in us”.
From the words of Trentin it’s clear that the Wilier-Pirelli team will have strong Italian roots but with an international scope that aims to grow even further in the next few years. Indeed, the Wilier Triestina – Pirelli Factory Team has set lofty short-terms goals for itself in the Marathon series, among which a win at the Cape Epic with two duos vying for the very top positions, and in the middle-long term in the XCO category, where the true protagonists will be the younger generation, ready to rise and dream of the Paris Olympics and the podium at the World Cup.
All the riders will compete on the new, full-suspension URTA SLR mountain bike. The team will feature three colour combinations: a standard one – black matt – and two special versions tailor-created for Italian champions Giada Specia and Fabian Rabensteiner (Italy), and for Wout Alleman (Belgium).
Andrea Gastaldello, Executive Chairman of Wilier Triestina: ”With the birth of the Wilier Triestina-Pirelli Factory Team, we sought to take a giant step forward in the off-road sector. Our goal to increase our market shares and reputation in the MTB sector internationally has been clear for some time: first by sponsoring Massimo Debertolis‘ Wilier 7C Force marathon team – which will continue throughout 2022 – and then with the launch of increasingly higher level new products.
In 2021 we presented the full suspension super light URTA SLR, a premium range product designed and made for professional racers. A bike that has all the credentials to compete and win in both the Marathon series and in cross country. This is what prompted us to become a new title partner of Marco Trentin’s team, now the Wilier Triestina-Pirelli Factory Team. Being identified as a Factory Team is a clear message of how the team will be directly linked to our company, to offer support in the development of new products that, we’re certain, will be appreciated by all bikers.
We’re confident that there is a lot of good to be had from this experience, also because we’re in good company. Others who have decided to join us in this undeniably prestigious brand project include Pirelli, Shimano, Fox, and Miche, and this gives us great pride. On the sporting level, we hope to immediately start off with major results with riders such as Geismayr, Rabensteiner, Del Cosmo, Alleman and Porro in the Marathon category. In cross country, our sights are set on the medium term with the decision to support an extremely talented younger generation that includes Avondetto, Specia and Baumann. With them we are already looking ahead at Paris 2024”.
Pirelli has worked alongside Marco Trentin and many of the team’s younger members for many years, and with them has developed the XC RC tyres that have climbed to the top rungs of some of the most important international MTB races. Development that never ceases and which will now be even more galvanised by the desire to bring out Made in Italy excellence with a valuable and prestigious partner like Wilier Triestina.
THE BIKE OF THIS ARTICLE
URTA SLR – BLACK MATT
URTA SLR is at the height of Wilier Triestina’s evolution in the mountain bike sector. A top-tier bike made to provide a more technical and leading-edge cross country cycling experience. The frame has been designed to reach extremely high levels of traction and stability. Thanks to its reliability and efficiency, it is the best solution for those who strive for top performance on XCO/XCM courses.