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Canyon and Thibaut Dapréla split abruptly after just three short months

 Thibaut Dapréla .
Thibaut Dapréla .

In a surprising move, Canyon and the flamboyant and supremely talented French downhill rider Thibaut Dapréla have announced a mutually agreed departure from the Canyon CLLCTV team. Dapréla joined the CLLCTV in January and despite barely having time to throw a leg over the Canyon Sender downhill bike or even settle into the team they have parted ways, with Dapréla saying he will race the UCI 2024 World Cup downhill season as a privateer.

It was just back in January that the Frenchman made the move to Canyon, and it was seen as a coup for Canyon CLLCTV, to sign Dapréla as he announced he had left the Commençal/Muc-Off team. It was slightly puzzling at the time to see him move on from a downhill team he had successfully ridden for since his junior days, alongside his fellow French teammates Amaury Pierron and former Women's Downhill World Champion Myriam Nicole. With this sudden and unexpected departure from Canyon CLLCTV, it now seems even more mysterious.

Thibaut Dapréla riding for Commencal/Muc-Off at Fort William
Thibaut Dapréla riding for Commencal/Muc-Off at Fort William

We asked Canyon for a statement and were pointed by the German brand to a prepared statement that said, "By mutual agreement, we wish to inform the downhill community that Canyon will no longer be the official cycling sponsor of Thibaut Dapréla. This decision was aligned and carefully considered between Thibaut and Canyon. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Thibaut for his service to the Canyon CLLCTV racing team and wish him a healthy and successful season."

In a statement to VojoMag.com, Dapréla also announced that he will still ride a Canyon Sender, but as a privateer for the approaching UCI Downhill World Cup season, which kicks off at the end of April with Round One in Fort William, Scotland.

"My departure from the Canyon CLLCTV team was done by mutual agreement. I would like to point out that I will ride within a private structure and I am no longer part of the Canyon CLLCTV team, but I will ride on a Canyon Sender next season. I will also keep most of the components that I have been testing for several months to capitalize on all the work done this winter.

"There is no extra-sporting reason (for departure). However, given the way things are going, my family and I are now surrounded by advisors and lawyers in order, if necessary, to pursue anyone who still makes insulting or defamatory remarks about me. I don't like it but unfortunately, in today's society with the continued presence of social networks, we are forced to do this to protect ourselves."

Of course, there is a lot of rumor and speculation in what is still a breaking story. In fairness to Thibaut Dapréla and his family, we, therefore, refrain from passing further comment without the full facts and will update this breaking story should further confirmed facts arise.