VN news ticker: Blue Ridge TWENTY24 signs new riders, Team DSM completes 2023 roster

Here's what's making headlines on Wednesday, December 7.

Photo: Courtesy Virginia's Blue Ridge TWENTY24

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Virginia’s Blue Ridge TWENTY24 signs four additional riders

Virginia’s Blue Ridge TWENTY24 professional cycling has added four new cyclists to the team’s 2023 roster. Caileigh Filmer (CAN), Danielle Morshead (USA), Nicole Steinmetz (USA), and Laurel Quiñones (USA) have signed on to join the team in Roanoke in the new year.

The additions of Filmer, Morshead, Quiñones, and Steinmetz will round out the full roster for the 2023 season, which VBR TWENTY24 general manager Nicola Cranmer says will feature a diverse squad of track, mountain biking, gravel, ultra, eSports, and para-cycling athletes.

“I’m excited about our roster of returning athletes and impressive new talent,” said Cranmer, who recently announced the team’s return to UCI status in 2023. “I am really passionate about development and we have some excellent new performance candidates. It’s great to be working with Dani Morshead again; her first round with us, she was fresh out of college and not ready for a performance push. She has returned ready to do what it takes to be able to contribute to her trade team and also the U.S National Team opportunities.

“Once again, Zwift has been a valuable recruitment platform for us in identifying new talent like Laurel Quiñones, a raw, untapped talent. Caileigh Filmer knows how to target a high-performance goal; it’s no small feat scoring an Olympic rowing medal. Rowers have a strong work ethic; they know how to train hard and suffer, and it’s going to be a lot of fun adapting these athletes to a cycling focus. We have a very strong team in 2023 and I’m already looking forward to the race season.”

The team, formed in 2005, operates with the goal of creating a pathway for female athletes to the Olympics. The Twenty24 program has established a consistent athlete talent pipeline for road and track cyclists and additionally provides opportunities for athletes who excel in the virtual world of Zwift eSports and the new dynamic discipline of gravel racing. The team identifies and develops high-performance athletes and the next generation of competitive cyclists.

Team DSM completes its 2023 roster, officials confirmed Wednesday.

Mauro Brenner and Dylan Hicks will join the team’s development program, Enzo Leijnse has also extended his term with the squad, and Becky Storrie joins the women’s program.

Brenner will wear the team’s colors until at least the end of 2024, while Hicks, Leijnse, and Storrie have contracts through the 2023 season with the respective programs, officials said.

Storrie’s addition brings the women’s squad up to 16 riders, meanwhile, the team’s men’s WorldTour team is also set at 30 riders for 2023.

Tour Colombia canceled again in 2023

The Tour Colombia is off the UCI calendar for 2023, according to Colombian media reports.

Organizers did not have the financial backing to see the race return to the calendar for next year.

The race — formerly called Colombia Oro y Paz and Colombia 2.1 — debuted in 2018 with much fanfare. Huge crowds turned out to cheer on the peloton which included the top Colombian riders as well as some top international names.

The race was canceled in 2021 and 2022 due to COVID-19.

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