Felt Bicycles announced its 2014 enduro mountain bike team, the company's biggest and strongest to date. The team includes seven riders: Casey Coffman, Charlie Sponsel, Jon Wilson, Cody Phillips, Jake Dore, Jeremiah Newman and John Clark.
"Felt made a concerted effort to more heavily invest in enduro in 2014 and we could not be happier with the team we have assembled," said Doug Martin, Sports Marketing Director for Felt Bicycles.
"My colleague Eddie McDonald (of Felt MTB Marketing) drove the makings of this roster and it is already clear what a great team it is. This is an outstanding squad of young riders, each of whom is supremely talented. We are thrilled to have them all as Felt athletes."
"I am super excited to start my fourth year with Felt," said Coffman, who will focus on the California Enduro Series as well as the North American Enduro Events and North American World Series Events.
"The new team is unreal, we have a bunch of really great guys that can shred their bikes. It's gonna be super fun traveling with these guys this year. And with the new bike and experiences I have, this season is a step forward for me at the races."
Sponsel, winner of last year's Cascadia Dirt Cup, is new to the team.
Wilson, a returning team member, is busy teaching when he's not racing. He teaches fifth grade in the Reno, Nevada school district. He loves his job and home, but he was also glad to get out of the snow and visit the Felt headquarters in Southern California on a recent photo shoot trip.
"It was great to meet everyone at Felt and on the team, as well as check out the new bikes that are coming out," said Wilson.
Phillips is a student at Lees McRae College, attending on a cycling scholarship. In preparation for the upcoming season he's been practicing his descending skills and racing cyclo-cross, which he describes as, "basically a fast, flat enduro".
Dore is a South Tahoe resident who has made some changes to his 2014 training program. "Typically I would have been skiing, but there's not enough snow here, so I'm lifting weights."
Dore was top 10 in last year's Kamikaze Enduro and his goals are to continue his top 10 streak in major events as well as getting on the podium at all California and Oregon races. When he is not racing or training, Dore works a full-time in construction as well as teaching avalanche avoidance at the local ski slope.
Newman has numerous first place finishes in the Oregon Series and the World Enduro Series in Colorado and Oregon as an expert category racer. This is his first year as a professional.
Finally, returning rider Clark rounds out the 2014 enduro team. The 29-year old will be competing in the California Enduro Series. He'll also race the Ashland Enduro in Oregon. "I'm focusing on the basics, doing road rides, going to the gym, and eliminating the mistakes I made in the past years.
The seven-member squad will ride both the 150-160mm travel Felt Compulsion series and 130mm travel Virtue Nine series bikes.
The team's race schedule begins at the upcoming Sea Otter Classic. Additionally, they are contesting the North American Enduro Tour, Enduro World Series, as well as regional races.