Introducing the Young Heroes 2012 – on we go

The Canyon Young Heroes program, which was founded in 2008, has already helped many young riders on their way to a big career in cycling. One outstanding example is Rick Zabel, son of our mentor Erik Zabel. Rick made it into the pro ranks and now rides for the top Dutch racing team Rabobank. Jan Brockhoff is another example. Jan competed for the national squad on five occasions in 2011 and shone in numerous events and national championships. These are just two of many other examples of success. This year we are looking forward to supporting another ten talented riders on their way to successful careers in cycle sport.

Today we introduce you to Mathieu Rigollo from France and Manuel Porzner from Germany.

Hello Mathieu,
We are pleased to welcome you to the Canyon Young Heroes team.

Tell us a bit about yourself. How did you get interested in cycling?
I am Mathieu Rigollot, from France. I was born in Bar sur Aube on the 08/01/1997. This is also the city of my club, L’Etoile Cycliste Baralbine. I came to cycling thanks to my father, who also cycled when he was young, and seeing the Bar sur Aube night race every year. I have been riding road races and cyclo cross since I was 8 years old.

Which one of your successes to date are you particularly proud of?
There is no special success I am particularly proud of. I am proud of my performances over the entire season. I got 36 victories in 40 races that I won in both disciplines (road and cyclo-cross races). I was consistent throughout the season and also won the Champagne Ardennes FFC (French Federation) title.

What are your main aims for the 2012 season?
For 2012, I obviously hope to secure as many victories as I can and to discover new great races like the French Championship or the “Challenge de l’Est” or the Assen Tour with the Young Heroes. In cyclo-cross, I would like to have a successful winter season and am aiming for a place in the starting line-up in the French Championships.

Where would you like to be in your cycling career in five years time?
In 5 years from now on, I would like to be contracted to a professional team and earn a living from my passion. I want to take part in the biggest professional Classics and play a great role in those races. It would be the best way to realize my dreams.

Thanks for talking to us Mathieu; we wish you a great start to the season!
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Hello Manuel,
Congratulations! You have succeeded in snapping up one of the coveted places on the Canyon Young Heroes Team in 2012!

What does it mean to you to be part of the Young Heroes program?
It is an honor for me to represent Canyon in races and give everything. I think working together with the many young riders from all over Europe as well as sprint-legend Erik Zabel will help me gain a great deal of experience.
Furthermore I’m really looking forward to the professional support and superb equipment we’ll be receiving.

How did you get interested in cycling?
I got interested in cycle sport when I took part in a hobby race organized by my current club RSG Ansbach and from then on I was hooked. Bodo Schwager, the driving force in my club provided me with a bike and in 2006 I got my first racing license.

Which one of your successes to date are you particularly proud of?
I’ve had 83 wins in my career so far, my biggest ones being victory in the German Team Time-Trial Championship, four German runner-up titles on track and road as well as podium finishes in several international stage races including 3rd place in the prologue of the ASVÖ Radjugendtour 2011 and my victory at the Kidstour 2010.

What are your main aims for the 2012 season?
My main focus this year will be on the national Championships on track and road, but podium places in international stage races are still a major target for me.

We are looking forward to an exciting and successful season with you!

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