For the past few years there’s been something of a revolution happening in cycling across the pond.
L39ION of Los Angeles have been taking on the crit scene by a storm. the team fronted by former Pro Peloton rider Justin Williams and his brother Cory Williams the only team currently actively promoting diversity in cycling.
Justin Williams, former professional peloton rider with Trek-Livestrong back in 2010, created L39ION of Los Angeles in 2019 with his brother Cory Williams. Justin told the BBC: “We let it be known from the gun that this is more than a cycling team.
“You hear growing up the ‘more than an athlete’ thing from LeBron James – that’s what I envisioned when I thought about making it as an athlete. About being in a position to make other people’s lives better and to influence someone’s life in a positive way.”
Now, in 2021 as they enter the Conti scene for the first time, they’ve made two new signings, Standout female riders Skylar Schneider and Kendall Ryan, bringing the team their first female athletes.
“We saw an opportunity to help people who were really talented American riders,” said Justin Williams, putting his money where his mouth is when it comes to leading change in cycling.
Kendall Ryan said: “Joining L39ION is a big deal to me, I fell in love with the sport of cycling at a young age by racing criteriums in Southern California. The Williams brothers and I were on the same junior team, Major Motion. I learned a lot from them. My goals are to encourage desire and participation of women in the sport of cycling, equality of women in cycling, share my knowledge with the up and coming, and win every race we show up to.”
Skylar Schneider echoes Ryans’ comments adding: “As a professional athlete and a woman, I feel empowered to use my platform and position with L39ION of Los Angeles to make a difference. So, it means a lot to me that they have chosen me to fulfill this role.”
“This team will be a place where people of colour can see true representation in cycling,” said the team statement. “L39ION of Los Angeles will continue to work to open doors for the next generation of cyclists by changing the way teams work in the construct of American cycling.”