Zwift – the online fitness platform for cyclists – has announced that the Zwift Academy will return for 2017.
The talent ID program – which invites participants to try out for a UI World Tour pro contract by riding Zwift – aims to triple registrations in 2017 and create the world’s largest community of female cyclists.
Registrations are expected to open in June, with the qualification phase starting in September. In keeping with the 2016 program, participants will be asked to complete a range of group rides, training rides and structured training programs.
The biggest change for the 2017 season will be the introduction of e-racing to the semi-final stage in November.
“E-sport is coming to cycling; Zwift is leading the charge. Introducing a racing component to the Zwift Academy provides the judges with another important evaluation component,” commented Eric Min, Zwift founder & CEO.
“Zwift Academy racing will be an ideal testing ground for measuring and gauging new talent in a fair, effective and competitive environment. This new and unique project will ease many of the budget constraints in women’s cycling by allowing rider talent to be developed online and within a team structure.”
Three 2017 Zwift Academy finalists will be invited to the Canyon//SRAM Racing team camp at the end of the year.