Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Updated: Shaun Palmer on a 951

"Jeff Steber has just been on the phone to confirm the rumours that Shaun Palmer will make his mountainbike return on Intense Cycles.
We're all pretty excited to see the iconic figure back on the race scene and even hinting at a future design collaboration.

Palmer will be racing the US National next week & then the 2 Canadian WC's & Crankworks at this point.

DirtTV is heading over to Mont Sainte Anne next week, so stay tuned for video interviews and more info.

Here's the word from Jeff Steber at Intense Cycles.

July 13, 2009, Temecula, CA -- Legendary rider, Shaun Palmer makes his return to mountain biking the same way he made his debut: on an Intense Cycles downhill bike. Palmer and Intense first made history together in 1995 when the rookie rider rode the flagship Intense M1 to a series of surprise victories, launching both Palmer and Intense into the forefront of the sport.

Nearly fifteen years later, both Palmer and Intense remain household names in mountain biking. And with Palmer's return to downhilling, Intense Cycles President, designer and founder, Jeff Steber looks forward to collaborating with the rider who helped refine the M1 and redefine the sport.

"Something that not many people know about Shaun is that he is really technically savvy," says Steber. "He understands what works and can give specific feedback on how to improve the bike's performance. He is a great R&D guy and I'm really excited about working w/ him again."

A great R&D guy and not a bad racer, either. After a decades absence from the sport, Palm finished 2nd last weekend at the California Golden State Championships in Fontana. He is planning to use mountain bike racing as training for his attempt later this year at a spot on the US Olympic bordercross team.

"I have always done better in my sports when I stayed involved in two or three at a time. The worst thing for me is for my bad brains to sit around idle. I have to stay busy and the panic of racing downhill will keep me sharp and help me to achieve my olympic dreams", says Palmer. " Of course, I miss being at the races and I miss the fans but mostly I miss hanging out with my friends, especially Peaty."

Palmer could have had any bike but he says he chose Intense because of his relationship with the brand and Steber's ability to build anything Palmer wants in a bike, anytime. "Plus, I'm 40 now and I want to be involved with a brand that will allow me to use my design abilities now and in the long run." Palmer says.

If you think that sounds like a hint that there will be future collaborations between Palmer and Intense in the years to come, you might be right. But for now, as Palmer simply puts it "let's just haul ass this season w/o me smashing my nuts. See ya'll at the races!"

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