With two World Cup stops in 2006 (Curacao, Dutch Antilles and Balneario Camborio, Brazil), the Pan-Am Games and the growing popularity of the winter MTB classic, La Ruta de Los Conquistadores, participation in mountain biking is on the rise in Central America. So it's no surprise to see the launch of a new pro team from the southern hemisphere.
The full roster for San Jose, Costa Rica based Scotiabank/Toyota/DHL was announced this week. Primarily mountain-bikers, the team's three riders, Marco Pohland, Michael Rugama (teammates in last year's Trans Rockies) and Luis Villanea, will contest the twelve-race Costa Rican National MTB Series and select road races, Sea Otter and a collection of Canadian races during the 2006 season.
"All of these guys have competed internationally in UCI races," says team spokesperson Bob Garcia. "Luis has even competed in World Nature Games in Brazil - back when Rasmussen was still racing mountain bikes; finishing top ten against guys like Sauser and Frischknecht."
For more information, visit www.suspensiones.biz/team. There are plans for an English-language site in the coming months.