The Windham World Cup was a bittersweet one for Trek World Racing. While its Aaron Gwin won the elite men's downhill, another of its riders, Justin Leov, announced his retirement from the UCI Downhill World Cup circuit at the end of this 2012 season.
For a number of months, Leov has been preparing to announce that this season will be his last. It's his 10th season and his career includes many highlights such as three World Cup podiums, winning some US national events, Crankworx Garbanzo, and importantly having a major impact on the careers of Gwin and has compatriots Sam Blenkinsop, Cam Cole and Brook MacDonald.
"I've given this a lot of thought and for me there's no question that this is the time to announce my retirement," said the New Zealander. "The sport has given me a great 10 years, and these last four with Trek World Racing have been the real highlight. There are other things for me to do and both me and my wife Tory are looking forward to the future."
"I'll be giving it my all for the next races and aiming for the best results possible, I'll always be a super competitive and committed person but for now it's time to turn these traits to another life."
In his last practice run before the final in Windham, Leov smashed a tree with his left hand and raced the final with a suspected broken finger. The damage was evident but x-rays later confirmed he escaped serious injury and is off to Highland Park, New Hampshire, next weekend to race.
Team Director Martin Whiteley said, "While I've known for some time that this will be Justin's last year on the circuit, the public confirmation of it doesn't come any easier. Justin is an integral member of the team, a hugely talented rider, and an amazing mate and teammate. We will savour every week we have with him for the remainder of this year and then wish him well in his new chapter in lifer. We are truly indebted to Justin and all he has given us, the team and this sport."