Not that no one saw this coming, what with Anton signing to Martin Whiteley’s 23 Degrees a month or so back, well as of today Christchurch super-mini-shred Anton Cooper will be raicng for Trek World Racing joining fellow Kiwi Justin Leov on the powerhouse team. Full Press Release Below:

Trek World Racing announces its roster for 2012, returning once again with an impressive lineup of Cross-Country and Downhill riders ready to take on the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, World Championships, Olympics and a selected set of major events including Crankworx in Whistler, the Sea Otter Classic and the Sunshine Cup in Cyprus.

DH: As the number 1 Downhill team in the world this year, Trek World Racing will return with three elite men, namely Aaron Gwin (USA), Justin Leov (NZL) and Neko Mulally (USA). The three Downhill men will be aboard their Trek Session 9.9 carbon bikes and racing the full World Cup along with a number of MTB Grand Prix events in the US, Sea Otter Classic, Crankworx in Whistler, and other selected events.

Also new for the team in 2012 is the hiring of 2000 World Downhill Champion, Myles Rockwell, as a rider liaison assisting the riders with their training, strategy and racing at the World Cups and Worlds.

Tracy Moseley successfully raced for the programme for last three years, taking 18 World Cup podiums (including 6 wins), the World Championship Title in 2010, and the World Cup title in 2011. However she has decided to take her career in a different direction in 2012. T-Mo will be making her own announcement.

XC: The team will field four Cross-Country riders including new signing Junior XC phenom Anton Cooper (NZL) who will be racing selected events throughout 2012 while continuing with his education. Willow Rockwell (USA) returns to full time racing after getting married and having a child in December with husband Myles, with the goal of being selected to race for the USA at the London Olympics. Returning for their 4th year with the team are the Flueckiger brothers from Switzerland. 2010 Under 23 World Champion Mathias, and Lukas who finish 5th at last year’s Worlds, will be opting to spend more time racing the Trek Superfly 29’ers in 2012.

Rider Quotes in alphabetical order:

Anton Cooper – “I am very excited to join Trek World Racing for the 2012 season. It is a significant step forward in my goals of becoming a world class rider. This is aided by the fact that the team’s focus is at the World Cup, World Championship and Olympic stage where they are able to provide top level support that is required to perform at this level. This is a great way to kick-start my career as a professional Mountain Biker and I look forward to what lies ahead.”

Luk Flueckiger – “I have more confidence than ever before. I will start my 2012 season where my 2011 season ended. The Olympics are my biggest goal for the year.”

Math Flueckiger – “2011 was my first year as a full time professional athlete. It was such a big change and I expected too much from myself after a season like 2010. I learnt so much in 2011, and I’ll bring all this experience to 2012. I won’t look at other riders, results, etc. I will focus solely on me! My motto will be ‘step by step’, improving throughout the year.”

Aaron Gwin – “I’m looking forward to the upcoming year. We had an awesome season in 2011 and I’m excited to get back to the races with my team!”

Justin Leov – “2012 is going to be an exciting year; with a new coach on board I feel a new motivation towards my racing. My hopes and goals are to have fun at the events like I did this year and aim for those top steps of the podium, which so many times have just alluded me.”

Neko Mulally – “I’m excited to go into 2012 and put together all of the experiences that have brought me to this point. I can see it coming together already. It’s going to be awesome spending every weekend with people I love being around, I really can’t wait to go racing.”

Willow Rockwell – “I look forward to being the fastest mom on the planet. With the support of my Trek World Racing team and sponsors, I know I have everything I need to be the very best. I intend to do my part, and let the universe supply me with energy, grace and balance as I follow my destiny path.”

Team Owner Martin Whiteley – “After the successes of the past three years, the team returns once again with a strong lineup of athletes, and the same talented staff and sponsors we’ve been lucky to have with us in 2011, building on all that we’ve achieved to date. New signings Anton Cooper and Myles Rockwell bring both youthful enthusiasm and experience. Our major sponsors Trek, JBL, Shimano and Fox have been extremely supportive and I’m really excited to take the 2012 version of the team on the road next year.”

The team website will be updated with more information throughout December and January. For media who haven’t yet applied for their login to access photography, simply go to the Media tab on the site and apply.

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