Lately, I’ve been working with more and more cycling teams to create content—fun articles and blogs—about their riders, and I’m really excited about this announcement from Jukebox Cycling. The team has added young downhiller Rachel Pageau to the roster, and after meeting Rachel, I couldn’t be more stoked for her. She’s a rider to watch, but also just an awesome person in general, and this news is big for the sport of women’s DH in general—it’s showing that women’s DH is a big freaking deal, and the riders are being taken seriously. So, hats off to Rachel + Jukebox! You can follow her here on IG and read some blogs about her over on Jukebox’s site here.
Fresh on the heels of her second place finish at DH Continental Championships and a win at Downhill Southeast, Canadian downhill racer Rachel Pageau joins Jukebox Cycling as the first MTB-focused athlete on the wide-ranging multi-disciplinary roster. The former XC rider has been racing both enduro and downhill since 2016, and most recently represented Canada at the World Championships in Val de Sole over the summer. Now, she’s chasing North American races around the country in her van, before heading over to Europe for the World Cup season of downhill racing.
“Second at Continental Championships was a great way to start the early season, and I’m quite happy with the way I rode, especially after a very nasty crash in Friday’s practice session,” she says of her recent race. “’I’m also very happy to have gotten some great training on different types of terrain and tracks.”
Pageau is originally from Chicoutimi, Quebec, but currently splits her time between North Carolina and Tennessee, prepping for a long season of racing. Joining Jukebox Cycling’s roster allows her to continue to chase her downhill goals, including a full World Cup season and hopefully another World Championship race. “I’m extremely excited to have partners like Jukebox Cycling that can help me grow,” she says. “I have so many different ideas that I can do with Jukebox Print, notebooks and booklets and stickers and so many other cool creative things!”
The recent Brevard College graduate joins cyclists Phil Gaimon, Dylan Johnson, Ruby West, Adam Roberge and Alexey Vermeulen as the squad’s first gravity racer. Her faithful pup Ranger also joins the ‘dogs of Jukebox Cycling’ roster, which includes Vermeulen’s Instagram-famous mini-dachshund Willie and Gaimon’s Creature.
“This year, there’s so much room for improvement—and right now, I have so much room to progress!” she adds. “Last season, I was sleeping in a Honda Fit, so you can imagine that it was not an ideal race situation. Now, I’m trying to do better. For the first time, I’m really focusing on being all-in as a racer. With sponsors like Jukebox Cycling, I’m trying to invest in having a more dialed program.”
This spring and summer, Pageau will be focused on downhill racing with an emphasis on World Cup-level competition. She competed for Team Canada in 2021 at World Championships, placing 18th, and plans to improve on last season’s results by opting out of enduro racing in order to focus primarily on downhill.
“I just love bike racing more than anything,” she says. “I still have so much room to grow, there are still so many things I can achieve. And I’m still achieving things every year. Every day, every week, every month, there’s still a little bit of improvement that I find. I finally have great partners to work with, and that’s even more motivation to keep going to see where that gets me. As long as there’s progression and there’s room to grow, I don’t see why I would stop.”
Images by Jack Rice