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Micayla Gatto on Diamondback for 2016

Micayla Gatto puts racing on the back burner so that she can concentrate on creating fun and unique content in 2016.

FROM DIAMONDBACK:

“With the new year brings new faces to teams all across the sport and we’re super excited to announce the addition of Micayla Gatto to Diamondback’s 2016 roster. MIcyala, best known for her downhill racing prowess on the World Cup circuit, Crankworx, and all over Canada, is starting the next chapter of her career with a focus on seeking far off adventures on two wheels. Micayla’s talents run far beyond just biking. She’s an accomplished artist, a very talented musician, and a super ambassador for the sport. Her resume includes coaching for Summer Gravity Camps in Whistler, local camps on the North Shore, and cycling advocacy well beyond the local scene. We’re excited to have Micayla’s infectious energy on our team and look forward to working with her to bring unique, humorous, artistic and exciting content for everyone to enjoy throughout the year.”

The nice people at Diamondback even sipplied us with an interview!

Micayla, welcome to Diamondback for the 2016 season. What are you most looking forward to this year?
Hello and thanks! I’m so excited to start a new chapter of my riding career with an awesome new family. I’d say I’m most looking forward to the creativity and flexibility the team has, and to be working with Mike Hopkins on some projects. Never met the guy but judging by his edits we’ll get along juuust fine. Also having Lacy Kemp as my “boss” is probably one of the best things ever.

Diamondback has kind of an adventure bike vibe going these days. How does that fit in with what you do?
I stopped racing World Cups at the end of my 2014 season and actually took a year “off” to really reconnect to why I ride bikes. I realised that my love for riding didn’t come from race results, so for 2016 I’ve shifted my focus from what I think everyone else wants me to do, to what I want to do. Nothing is more appealing to me than setting out on an epic ride with a good crew to tell a rad story and gain new perspectives. Although my racing really played a huge role in who I am today, I want to discover more of the places, people, and cultures of mountain biking, not just one race track with the same people in a different location each week.

You’re primarily known in the bike world as a downhill racer. Will you still compete?
Ha ha, yeah, I don’t think I’ll ever stop competing, whether that’s against myself or the clock. Although I’m not results-based anymore, I do still love to push myself and go fast, so you might see me drop in to an event or two this season, just to see how I stack up. Now that I’m not required to race, I like to play around with my training a bit more, and see what still produces results. Racing is more of an experiment for me now, and I like that. The girls are always pushing the envelope so it’s a good wake up call to get thrown into that! Plus it’s been such a huge part of my life for so long, it’s nice to see familiar faces and old friends again. I don’t miss the constant travelling and the lack of exploration World Cups demand, but I do miss the vibe and going fast on a bike.

So far you’ve been riding the 2016 Mission Pro. How is the bike treating you and were you surprised by it’s ability at all?
I’m going to be completely honest here. The bike I had before the Mission was my most favourite bike I’ve ever had, so I was a bit hesitant to try something new, no matter what the brand. When I hopped on the Mission Pro, I was riding with a bit of scepticism, but even with that mindset I was blown away. The thing is an absolute BEAST on the downhill. Not having a downhill bike for over a year, I felt that rush of going legitimately fast again, but on a trail bike! Scared me a little. I also thought that the climbing would be much harder seeing as it was such an awesome performer on the descents, but, with no lockouts or adjustments, I climbed up all my regular trails just fine. Definitely in love with this bike. I’ve only ridden it a handful of times but already I’m riding harder lines, and I know it’s only going to open more doors to what I’m capable of doing on a trail bike. SO excited!

What do you think you can bring to Diamondback and its audience that will continue to help grow our brand and get more people riding our bikes?
Well, I’m a girl, so that’s different ha ha. But seriously, I am truly passionate about reaching out to the community of cycling and inspiring people of all genders and ages to get on a bike and enjoy the ride. I can’t even begin to explain how much joy I get from seeing people live their dreams and realise their potential. Especially kids. I remember growing up and looking to the pros to guide me, to inspire me and make me dream big. By living my life to the fullest and playing out my dreams to be shared with everyone, I hope maybe I too can be a role model for a kid looking for dreams to chase.

Why do you think Diamondback is a good fit for you?
I like bikes, they like bikes, we all like to ride and have fun… y’know. Ha ha, but what I feel is different with Diamondback is their ability to really mix approachability and fun with performance and function. I like to have a great time on great gear and tell great stories, and I feel that’s exactly what Diamondback likes too. Like you said earlier, the whole riding adventure-vibe. It’s a lifestyle. It’s trending, and I’m into it.

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