Specialized Masters & Juniors Development

As part of its ongoing commitment to cycling advocacy, Specialized announces the formation of the Specialized Masters Team and Junior Development Program, formerly the AMD-Discovery Channel Masters Team and Junior Development Program. For 2008, the Specialized Junior Development Program is made up of nine Northern California cyclists from 13-16 years old, each with a designated mentor from the Specialized Masters Team including former Olympians, World Champions and ex Pros. Through hands-on training and encouragement, each mentor will help their junior partners realize their individual goals—cycling or otherwise.

"It’s an honor to support the bright future of American cycling through programs like these. All of us at Specialized look forward to the incredible achievements in store from these awesome teams and riders," said Specialized Founder and President Mike Sinyard.

The AMD-Discovery Channel Junior Development Program proved overwhelmingly successful during its inaugural year in 2007. Aside from team victories at several Northern California district championships, four members raced internationally with the Junior US National Team, claiming several podium finishes and one especially powerful victory in the infamous heartland of competitive cycling, Belgium.

Specialized looks forward to building on this success in 2008 and beyond. The masters and junior teams will be equipped with Specialized Tarmac SL2 bikes, S-Works helmets and road shoes, and select masters will ride Transitions, Roval wheels and other pro-level equipment—some of the same bikes and equipment ridden by Specialized-sponsored Pro teams QUICK STEP, Gerolsteiner, Lampre, Milram and Silence-Lotto.

"We are very excited about having a pillar of the cycling community such as Specialized step up to the plate and partner with us to ensure the continued success of our program for many years to come. Not only did Specialized see the value in what we were accomplishing with the junior development program, but also understood the need for our program to have consistency over time," said Wyatt Weisel, current team manager.

Aside from cycling development at the junior level, Specialized has sponsored the USA U23 road and mountain bike teams (ages 19-23) for the last four years, outfitting them with full array of Specialized bikes and equipment, including the Tarmac SL and Epic.

Team website teamspecializedracing.com.

Team blog teamspecializedracing.blogspot.com.