Archive for the ‘Young Heroes 2011’ Category

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Stephan Stockinger

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Hello readers,

My name is Stephan Stockinger and I’m 15 years old. I live in lovely Lauchheim and attend the 10th class in the secondary modern school. My biggest hobby alongside speed skating is cycle sport, which I’ve been doing for just about 5 years and now I spend every available minute on the bike.

In my second year in the U15 I was runner-up in the German championship, won the Tour of the South Palatinate and finished second in both the TMP-Tour and Kids-Tour stage races. In addition, I was road race and time-trial champion in Rhineland-Palatinate in 2009. Shortly after that I was runner up in the German road race championship. The season was therefore a major success for me.

I trained really well so that my first year in the U-17 looked very promising. I applied to join the Young Heroes and was accepted onto the team.
Our first meeting and photo shooting took place in Italy. There we received our new Canyon bikes, trained with our mentor Erik Zabel and experienced Milan-San Remo at first-hand. In my first season with the Young Heroes I became Bavarian cyclo-cross champion and also finished second on the track at Niederpöring at the circuit race in Oberdietfurt.

Unfortunately my season came to a premature end after just a few races when I came down with a viral infection, which was particularly drawn-out. I have now been back in training for around 2 months, building myself up for the forthcoming season in 2011 together with Erik Zabel and the rest of the team.

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Thomas Capponi

Sunday, January 9th, 2011

Hello readers,

My name is Thomas Copponi and I’m from Marseille in France. I’m a very versatile cyclist. I ride road races, cyclo cross and MTB.


When I first heard about the Young Heroes initiative it was clear to me that I simply had to be part of that team. Therefore, I got my application ready and sent it off to Canyon. I could hardly wait until I got a reply, but when I finally did I was really happy until I read the contents of the letter – I was still too young and should apply again a year later. After a further year my dream then became reality.

My first year with the Young Heroes was unbelievable! Whether it was riding together with Erik Zabel or visiting cities and countries that I didn’t yet know, it was simply sensational to get to know and have fun with other riders from around the world! All this was polished off by a perfectly equipped bike and the jerseys that made us look like the pros.


In my first year I started in the team at the Vattenfall-Classics and faired really well. It was a unique experience for all of us since it was the first time that we were competing in an international team.

One year later I won the Bouches du Rhône and was third in the Tour du Rhônes on the road. In addition, I became French individual pursuit champion. As if all that wasn’t enough I also became champion of Provence and was successful in the cyclo cross at the Bouches du Rhône. In the first race I finshed 27th and in the 2nd and 3rd heats I finished 6th both times.

In 2011 I plan to achieve further success with the Young Heroes whether it’s on the road, in cyclo cross or on the mountain bike.

I am looking forward to experiencing many memorable moments with the Young Heroes this year!

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Leon Rohde

Saturday, January 8th, 2011

Dear readers,

My name is Leon Rohde; I’m 15 years old and attend the sports school in Cottbus. I joined the Young Heroes last year and will be riding my second season for Canyon in 2011. I got to join the team through Jan Brockhoff, a friend of mine, as well as other riders.

My first year was fantastic! Both the kick-off meeting in Imperia and the appearance at the Young Classics in my home town of Hamburg were out of this world. I also really love the super light and stiff bike. The highlights of my season were the German championships on the road and on the track where I finished 7th in the Madison and 10in the points race.

I also remember the last talent scouting on the road in Hildesheim where I finished 6th. I was able to beat my personal best at the track scouting at the end of the year. I won the Omnium and improved my personal best over 1000 metres to 2.19 mins.

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Ann-Leonie Wiechmann

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

Hello dear readers,
My name is Ann-Leonie Wiechmann. I’m 15 years old and have been in love with cycling for seven years now. I have been riding for the Canyon Young Heroes Team for two seasons now. Thanks to Jan Brockhoff I became aware of the initiative and simply had to be a part of it. The joy I felt when I had the letter of acceptance from Canyon was overwhelming and I just couldn’t wait to sit on my new bike!

In my first year I got a great deal of impressions. It began with the superbly equipped bike, followed by an exciting weekend in Italy where the team was introduced to us once again. In addition, I was able to get to know Erik Zabel personally for the first time and I learnt a few good tips and tricks from him.

My personal highlights in 2010 were obviously the German championships where I was able to be up there competing at the front. It was the first time that I felt pressure before a race and I wasn’t released from that pressure until I took my hands of the bars to celebrate my win. I was also over the moon that I was able to finish 3rd in the points race and time-trial respectively.


It was a great time and I’m looking forward to hopefully achieving similar success in 2011.

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Joshua Stritzinger

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Hello everyone,

My name is Joshua Stritzinger and I’m 15 years old and in the 10th grade at the Eduard-Spranger-Gymnasiums in Landau in the Palatinate. I’m a passionate cyclist. My local club is the RC Silber Pils Bellheim. I first heard about the Young Heroes at a race in Karbach in 2009, and from that moment on it was my greatest wish to ride for this team. Therefore I quickly applied to Canyon. In January 2010 I then received a letter telling me I’d made it onto the team. I’ll never forget that moment when I first found out about my success. It was the most emotional moment in my sporting career to date.

Joshua Stritzinger-2

The first year as a Young Hero was an absolutely fantastic one. It was great fun to train together with the other team members and Erik Zabel was always on hand to give us valuable advice. It was just great being able to ride with a top pro like Erik.

The Team Coordinator Dominic Piquardt always had a sympathetic ear if anything needed explaining. The biggest highlight in my year was my participation in the German championships, which I had qualified for at the championships in Southern Germany. In addition, it was also super to win the individual time-trial championship in South West Germany and the regional championship in Rhineland-Palatinate.

Joshua Stritzinger-7

I’m very happy that I’ll be a Canyon Young Hero again in 2011 and am looking forward to meeting the other members of the team. I most excited about the new team members so I’d like to already wish them a warm welcome.

Introducing the Canyon Young Heroes: Philipp Turner

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

The registration period for the Canyon Young Heroes 2011 is now over. We’ll wait a few more days just in case an application got delayed in the post and then the jury will begin with its consultations. But here are a few of the Heroes who joined the team last year for starters. All the Canyon Young Heroes, who were successful in 2010, and are now not too old to be part of the team, will also be back in 2011.

Philipp Turner on his first year as a Canyon Young Hero

Hello readers,
My name is Philipp Turner, I’m 15 and I’m from Dortmund.
I’m a grammar school pupil in the 9th grade and have been racing for 3 years. I’ve been riding for the RSV Unna since October 2009 and I am currently part of the North Rhine Westphalian and German national squads.

I first heard about the Canyon initiative for young riders from my then trainer in 2009 and immediately applied in Koblenz. I then got an early Christmas present and found out that I had been selected for the Young Heroes Team in 2010. I was over the moon and couldn’t wait to get started! In the first year I learned that one has to be very disciplined and as a sportsman one has to take care of a lot of organisational things. These include giving interviews, writing race reports, but also technical aspects such as bike maintenance, changing chain rings and much more.


However, there were also a lot of experiences. First there was the kick-off meeting in Imperia, Italy where we got our team bikes and visited the Milan-San Remo classic race as well as the training sessions with ex-pro Erik Zabel. At the end of April I had the chance to test the first track bike prototype of the V-Drome AL on the track in Büttgen together with Erik. There I was able to gain a lot of experience.


One special highlight of the year of the year was taking part in the Young classics in Hamburg, which is the biggest international U-17 stage race, and having Erik Zabel as a personal coach and Dieter Ruthenberg as masseur. Erik’s coaching from the roadside and the superb support from Dieter was excellent to have. We then were able to concentrate all our efforts on the racing.

In addition, Erik’s 40th birthday will remain forever etched into my memory because it was on that day that I became German champion against the clock over 500m. At the end of September I was able to confirm my ability at the BDR scouting session in Frankfurt/Oder in time-trialling and in the individual and team pursuits. At the end of October I had a letter in my letter box from the BDR, in which I read that I had been called up to national road and track squad for 2011.

Philipp Turner Portrait

Young Heroes 2011, team presentation January

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

As this year is drawing to a close the dates for the first Young Heroes 2011 events are already set. All Young Heroes applicants should keep the 11th-13th February free. As this is the weekend of the first meeting with Erik Zabel and the Canyon team. This is when the team will get to know each other and each member will receive their brand new Canyon Ultimate CF SLX road bike.

The next dates that applicants need to be aware of is the weekend of 25th-27th of March. This is when the team will be invited to the sunny island of Majorca for a training weekend with Erik Zabel. In a relaxed atmosphere team members will be free to explore the island and have the opportunity to prove themselves for the highlight of the 2011 season:, the Vattenfall Young classics in Hamburg.

After having received the final applications, the jury will get together with each individual rider and announce its decision by mid-January. We wish all the candidates success.


Young Heroes 2011: the Jury

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

There are still a few days to go before the closing date for entries, but today we’d like to introduce you to the jury who’ll be deciding on the intake of Young Heroes for the coming season.

Roman Arnold

The Young Heroes are something very close to Roman Arnold’s heart. The founder and owner of Canyon is fully behind the team because in his youth he also competed on both track and road and knows just how expensive a full racing season can be.

Erik Zabel

His son brought him to Canyon because Rick was a member of the very first Young Heroes squad. Erik liked the idea so much that he now supports the team himself. The former top sprinter can assess whether a rider has talent and knows what it’s all about. Erik also knows that a young rider above all needs one thing, and that’s passion. Erik is present when the Young Heroes meet for the first time and get their equipment; he supports them at a training camp on Mallorca and is their coach at the Vattenfall Young Classics event.

Michael Rich

The ex-pro and time-trial specialist is still very closely tied to the pro-scene. He is the link between Omega Pharma-Lotto and Canyon. In addition, the technology fanatic is always a welcome guest at Canyon’s R+D department because with his vast experience he can help to optimise the latest innovations even further. He of course also realizes during his daily work with the Young Heroes team just how important it is to promote good young talent.

Sebastian Lang

The likeable rider from Erfurt is a pro with the Omega Pharma-Lotto team. His greatest success to date was his victory in the German Time-Trial Championship. He is one of the reliable team mates of Jurgen van Den Broeck and Philippe Gilbert. Both these stars would find it considerably more difficult to achieve as many victories as they do without his help. His reports from the Tour de France are also highly regarded and he gives the reader an insight into what goes on behind the scenes. As an active pro he also gives the Young Heroes applicants a completely different perspective on the sport.

Dominic Piquardt

He is the Canyon Team and Event Coordinator and is the contact person for all the riders during the season. If a derailleur hanger is bent or the frame was damaged in a crash, Dominic is always on hand to find a fast and trouble-free solution because the Young Heroes need to be able to concentrate on their racing and shouldn’t have to worry about their equipment.

Lucas Liß

The Tiger. He was a member of the first young heroes squad and still competes successfully on both track and road. He recently won two silver medals at the European Championship in St. Petersburg. He still has close ties with Canyon. He is in the meantime a Young Heroes veteran and a true friend of Canyon.

The jury has already taken a look at the first applications and was impressed by the quality of the applicants. In the next few days the applications will be processed further so that at the start of next season a powerful Young Heroes squad can be assembled.