Get your week started with the latest news in women’s cycling
Last week there were a series of new signings and contract extensions. Italian rider Ilaria Sanguineti will join Trek-Segafredo for the next two years after having ridden the past five years with Valcar-Service & Travel. She will take the role of lead out and sprinter in her new team.
Olympian and former road and time trial national champion, Canadian rider Alison Jackson returns to EF-Education TIBCO-SVB. She has previously raced with the US outfit during the 2018 and 2019 seasons and will bolster the team’s spring classics squad.
Chelsie Tan, the first rider from Singapore to step up to a WorldTour team has extended with BikeExchange-Jayco for 2023. Having only started cycling in 2018 and prior to joining the team, raced only in Asia, it was a big challenge for Tan but she has proven her abilities and motivation. Former Australian rower Georgie Howe signed a 2-year contract with the Australian team. Howe who competed at the highest level for 13 years in rowing before switching to cycling this year, became the Oceania Continental Time Trial Championship and took the overall victory in the Australian road series.
Former Belgian national champ Jesse Vandenbulcke has re-signed with Le Col-Wahoo for another two years. She has impressed during her debut season with the team including a top 10 result in the Ride London Classique.
Former Junior and current Oceania champion Australian Josie Talbot, French rider Morgane Coston and 19 year-old neo-pro Flavie Boulais will join Team Cofidis next year.
Former Zwift Academy winner New Zealand rider Ella Harris joins Le Col – Wahoo for the next two seasons.
Australian rider Jessica Allen has extended with Team BikeExchange-Jayco for another year. She has been with the Australian squad since 2016 and played a big role in the team’s many successes.
Georgia Williams joins EF-Education next year. The New Zealand rider brings with her a decade of experience racing in the professional peloton and excels in the hilly classics, stage races, and time trials.
Colombian rider Paula Patiño and Serbian teammate Jelena Erić extended until 2025 with Movistar Team. The two already had a contract with the Spanish outfit for 2023 but will stay for an additional two years.
Liv Racing Xstra announced the extension of one-year contracts to the three key team riders Marta Jaskulska, Ayesha McGowan, and Sabrina Stultiens. Stultiens has been riding professionally for a decade and Ayesha McGowan joined the UCI Women’s WorldTeam in 2021, making her the first Black American woman to be a pro cyclist.
Agnieszka Skalniak-Sójka will join CANYON//SRAM Racing on a two-year deal. The Polish rider won a bronze medal in the 2015 junior road world championships, and in 2022 won the national title in the individual time trial.
Former triathlete, Kimberly Cadzow from New Zealand will ride for Team Jumbo-Visma Women for the next two seasons. Early in 2021, Cadzow who wanted to do less running, switched from triathlon to cycling.
Dutch rider Evy Kuijpers, joins Plantur Pura from Human Powered Health for the next two seasons. Austrian national road and TT champion Christina Schweinberger has extended her contract with the team until the end of 2025.
Dutch road and track rider Maike van der Duin will join Canyon/SRAM through to 2024. The Dutch rider won four medals at the U23 European track championships, including a gold in the scratch race and later won a silver medal in the same event at the UCI track world championships.
The UCI has been meeting in Australia during the championships to decide which cities and regions will host the World Championships within the next few years. Montreal will be the host city for 2026, the first time Canada hosts the event since 2003. The Haute-Savoie region of France will stage the 2027 races, an event that will also include gravel, endurance and e-cycling.
Other decisions by the UCI include: The 7-day Vuelta Feminina has been confirmed for 1-7 May 2023. Host cities/regions of 14 UCI World Championships – for a total of ten countries on four continents – were also unveiled. More information here. The routes of the 2023 World Road Championships in Glasgow and across Scotland have also been revealed. The Elite Women’s course will feature a distance of 157.4 km and 1,930 m of climbing. More here.
The UCI Gravel World Championships 2024 will be held in Flanders, in Vlaams-Brabant.
New Zealand rider Olivia Ray has been sanctioned by USADA for two and a half years, having admitted to the use and possession of multiple prohibited substances. Ray has previously been riding for Human Powered Heath but had been dropped from the roster after the doping allegation. Cycling New Zealand fully supports the actions of USADA but will continue to provide support to Ray during the challenging times faced by her.
Road World Championships Junior ITT: Zoe Bäckstedt (GBR) ahead of Justyna Czapla (GER) and Febe Jooris (BEL)
Mixed Relay: Switzerland ahead of Italy and Australia
Junior RR: Zoe Bäckstedt (GBR) ahead of Eglantine Rayer (FRA) and Nienke Vinke (NDL)
U23 RR: Niamh Fisher-Black (NZL) ahead of Pfeiffer Georgi (GBR) and Ricarda Bauernfeind (GER)
Elite RR: Annemiek van Vleuten (NDL) ahead of Lotte Kopecky (BEL) and Silvia Persico (ITA)
We check in with Abi Smith of EF Education-TIBCO-SVB for an insightful recount of this year’s season, from her setbacks, to overcoming obstacles, and all the good memories from the season. Read all about it here.
This week in cycling history
Wilma van der Wal
Van der Wal was the first Dutch rider to participate in the first World Championships in Reims where female riders were able to participate. Although the Dutch Cycling Federation did not grant her a license to race, the young woman was determined to compete and eventually the UCI provided her with an international license. Elsy Jacob won the championships that year and although van der Wal placed last, she nevertheless paved the way for female riders in the future. Born in 1922 or 1923 (records are conflicting), she still enjoys watching women’s racing on television.
The now 39 year-old Australian track rider is a former Commonwealth and Olympic gold medallist as well as track cycling world champion, making her one of the most decorated track cyclists of all times. She made Olympic history in Rio in 2016 by being the first and only Australian athlete from any sport to have ever won individual medals at 4 consecutive Olympic Games. She retired from the sport in 2016 and is now on the speaker circuits and does commentary for an Australian TV network as well as pursuing her many passions and interests including charitable endeavours.
Mirjam Melchers-van Poppel
The Dutch rider’s birthday was on 26 September. The now 47-year-old athlete was one of the leading cyclists of her time. She was not only an accomplished road cyclist, winning many one-day races, her specialty, but also was successful in cyclocross racing.
Zwift rides of the week
Zwift Academy Road 2022
The Academy program delivers a crash course in getting faster, stronger, and training smarter. Six structured workouts pinpoint specific energy systems and educate you along the way. Baseline and Finish Line rides that bookend your training journey measure your progress. We’re over halfway through with this year’s Academy Road so the time is now! Read more here.
Ride with James from Zwift HQ
How do I sign up for the Everest Challenge? What’s the fastest bike you can buy with hard earned Drops? How do I get better at racing? Join James from Zwift HQ for an hour and ask all of your burning questions. More info here!
From our online shop
Voxwomen T-shirt – £20
Get yours this summer! Wear our new t-shirt to show your support for the sport. Everyone will know you’re an avid follower of women’s cycling when you wear this item to support Voxwomen! Get yours here!