Matti Lehikoinen is one of the DH racing legends of our time, and now we are proud to present that he is joining the Pole team full time. He will be working directly with Leo Kokkonen on marketing and product development. Here are Matti’s thoughts about his new job.
After a long and memorable racing career, it’s time for me to take a step forward in my life. I have had many ups and downs during my racing career, and I have never given up. By keeping the spirit alive, I’ve found out that there’s always a new adventure around the corner. I may have stopped racing full time, but I love bikes so much that I want to keep the wheels spinning. Bicycles have been a vital part of my life for as long as I can remember. The discipline didn’t really matter for as long as I was riding my bike. My parents took me to all the possible races in Finland from Road to XC to DH, and eventually, cycling became my profession.
During my racing career, I was privileged to work with a lot of great people and great companies. Now that I look back, we were there creating the modern era downhill scene with faster tracks and a unique style of riding. It has been a cool journey to see how mountain biking has progressed over the years from riding to the equipment. Being able to test, give feedback and input to the products, not only did it helped me to achieve my own goals but also eventually lead to the community of mountain bikers getting better products. I have learned a lot about product development over the years, and I see joining the team at Pole Bike as an excellent opportunity for us to push the boundaries even further with the brand that is already one of the most innovative mountain companies out there. I believe that they already have a great line-up of bikes and joining forces, we can make the range even more cutting edge.
Into the future
This will be a new and exciting chapter in my life, and I am eager to share my knowledge and work closely with the guys at Pole Bikes. We are both based in Finland, so it’s fascinating to see where this close relationship takes us. Pole is a rapidly growing company, and they are stepping up they´re game once again. We are launching Enduro Race Team soon to compete in the Enduro World Series. I will be in charge of the team as a manager. We will have a great roster of riders that are all young and talented guys. I believe that they are all capable of being top 10 guys next year. The goal for the team is to be here for the long-term and to give these riders a solid and strong platform to build upon and improve their results. With my past experience, I think I can be a big help for the riders. I have been in their boots before, and I can relate to what it’s like to be out there on a tough day, and those are the moments when a rider needs the most help.
Mountain biking is changing faster than ever, and I believe that together we can be part of a story that defines mountain biking in the future.