Tanja Erath wins pro contract with Canyon-SRAM after impressive Zwift performance

Former triathlete Tanja Erath focussed on cycling after an injury meant she could no longer run, now she's landed herself a ride with the Canyon-SRAM women's team for 2018

Tanja Erath.
(Image credit: Zwift/Canyon-SRAM)

Tanja Erath has secured a place on the top-level Canyon-SRAM women's team for 2018 after an impressive performance on online training system Zwift.

The German former triathlete and nurse only started focussing on her cycling a year ago after an injury ruled her out of running.

Erath was selected by judges from a field of 2,100 women on Zwift to ride for the German-registered Canyon-SRAM team. Members of Canyon-SRAM, Zwift and TrainSharp coaching selected a short-list of 12 riders before deciding on the winner.

“I started this confident in my skills as a cyclist and a racer, but had no idea it would end with me here in Koblenz with a World Tour schedule ahead of me,” said Erath.

“It’s been such a journey and I’m humbled by the talent I’ve been up against, especially with [Zwift Academy finalists] Siri [Hildonen] and Bri [Torkelson]. I’m so overwhelmed!”

>>> 21-year-old lands professional contract with Dimension Data after impressing with rides on Zwift

Erath will join the previous year's Zwift Academy winner, Leah Thorvilson at the Canyon-SRAM team, as Thorvilson has been handed a one-year contract extension for 2018 with the team

Canyon-SRAM racing manager Ronny Lauke praised the performance of Thorvilson over the past season, and is looking forward to welcoming Erath.

“We took a chance with the Zwift Academy last year and we’re very happy with what it brought to our team,” said Lauke,

“Leah is a great addition and, seeing Tanja’s dedication, drive, and strength only reminds us we’ve got a great programme here to bring talent into the women’s peloton.”

Erath will make her Canyon-SRAM racing debut in the spring, and like her team-mates will benefit from the full coaching and training support from the squad.

Zwift will link up again with Canyon-SRAM towards the end of 2018 to run the initiative again and select a further rider.

In November, Zwift announced that 21-year-old New Zealand rider Ollie Jones had become the first male rider to earn a place on a professional cycling team via the Zwift Academy.

Jones beat more than 9,000 riders to gain a place on Dimension Data‘s development team.

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Nigel Wynn
Nigel Wynn

Nigel Wynn worked as associate editor on CyclingWeekly.com, he worked almost single-handedly on the Cycling Weekly website in its early days. His passion for cycling, his writing and his creativity, as well as his hard work and dedication, were the original driving force behind the website’s success. Without him, CyclingWeekly.com would certainly not exist on the size and scale that it enjoys today. Nigel sadly passed away, following a brave battle with a cancer-related illness, in 2018. He was a highly valued colleague, and more importantly, n exceptional person to work with - his presence is sorely missed.