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California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized Rider graduates to WorldTour team

California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized is proud to announce that another young rider in the development program has graduated to join a WorldTour team. After two successful years with the squad which included winning the USA Under-23 Time Trial Championship, Evan Huffman signed a two-year professional contract with the Astana Pro Team.

Team Manager and VP of Sales for California Giant Berry Farms, Anthony Gallino commented “The whole goal of the program is to develop young riders to get them ready for that next level. Let them mature through our program so they can successfully graduate to teams at the WorldTour level and also keeping them in the red thread family- Specialized sponsored programs - all the way through their career.”

“California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized is an excellent program and I feel very lucky to have been a part of it. I learned a lot, but the main thing I learned is that there is always a lot more to learn. It's important to be open to new ideas and surround yourself with knowledgeable, experienced people. The model CalGiant/Specialized uses of having mostly a young roster, but keeping around some older mentor riders worked really well for me. I'll be in a somewhat similar position on Astana with a lot of really good riders around me who I can learn from.” said Huffman of his years with the Berries."

"Specialized is thrilled to see Evan work so hard to make it to this point in his career. He will be well missed here in the states, but will be well taken care of by Team Astana and the entire Specialized support crew in Europe. We couldn't be happier to graduate him from one of our development teams Cal-Giant, to the pro peloton," said Mallory Burda, USA Sports Marketing, Specialized Bicycle Components.



In addition to being the fastest at the Under-23 Time Trial Championships, Huffman also won the time trial at the SRAM Tour of the Gila as well as multiple other victories in Northern California races. “Evan earned it himself, he is a tremendous athlete with tremendous drive. We knew that he could do it so it was just a matter of getting him in the right situations where he could excel and he did. He's got an opportunity of a lifetime and we're just really proud of him.” Gallino added.

Previous California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized riders that have moved on to professional teams include Andrew Talansky and Ken Hanson. For Gallino, it's about what he calls a 'catch and release' model. “The whole model being that is to have a Specialized junior program graduate into our development program and then into a Specialized WorldTour team. Our whole program is about getting kids in and graduating them in one or two years.”


Photo Caption: Evan Huffman (California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized) accelerates at the start of his winning US National Time Trial Championships ride - photo by Lyne Lamoureux

Cindy Jewell
California Giant Berry Farms
Tel. (831) 728-1965 x258
Mobile. (831) 566-2202
Fax. (831) 728-0613
cjewell@calgiant.com
www.calgiant.com
www.calgiant.com/cycling
 

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