Team News – Pearl Izumi – Sports Tour


Gabriella Shaw and Dame Sarah Storey both took race victories on Sunday to make 28 wins for the year already

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Team News – Pearl Izumi – Sports Tour

Team Press Release

Gabriella Shaw and Dame Sarah Storey both took race victories on Sunday 20th September to ensure the dominant Pearl Izumi – Sports Tours International team equalled their victory tally of 2014 with 5 weeks of racing in 2015 still to come!

During the morning of Sunday 20th, Dame Sarah was accompanied by recently married Nikola Matthews at the Weaver Valley Hill Climb up the iconic Cat and Fiddle climb out of Macclesfield. A huge field of 94 riders tackled the 10.1km climb and in the women’s event there was an early leader in the form of Becky Lewis, who had already dipped inside the existing course record by almost 20 seconds.

Sarah knew it was going to need a huge effort to take the win, but her powerful climbing style saw her smash the record by over 45 seconds to take the 27th race victory for the team of the year and place her 23rd in the men’s field.

Nikola had a strong ride to finish a very credible 7th just over 4 minutes down.

In the afternoon it was the turn of Gabriella Shaw, no stranger to the podium in Road, Time Trials and Criteriums to finish her road season off with a bang with a superb victory at the Tickhill Grand Prix. Tracking the lead group throughout the race, Gaby made a perfectly timed and devastating attack in the final kilometre of the race to take the victory in front of a huge crowd.

It was a brilliant way for the Yorkshire rider to end her road season and she now looks to the Track Nationals alongside Katie Archibald and Sarah Storey in the scratch and points races next weekend.

The target of 28 race victories to match the success of the team’s inaugural year was seen as an ambitious aim but throughout the year the riders have been resilient and attacking in all events which has seen the target met with 5 weeks of the year and plenty of racing still to come.

Barney Storey commented on the team’s approach and success in races of all types, “We have seen 7 of our 11 riders take race victories so far during 2015 and every rider has made the podium at least once during the year and we have seen numerous events where we have had a podium clean sweep! Every rider has also had an opportunity to race at UCI level too and this approach and step up from 2014 has without doubt contributed to our success.”

“What is most pleasing is that the victories are coming from such a range of riders, we don’t have one team leader who is supported week in, week out. Riders are flexible to events and capable of winning with a big team in support and also, as Gaby demonstrated yesterday, without team mates to rely on”.

Team captain and winner of the Cat and Fiddle Hill Climb, Dame Sarah Storey also explained more about the team and why the recent success is so important, “We are close to finalising our plans for 2016 and hope that we can further build on what we have achieved in the first two years of the organisation. Being able to maintain the momentum throughout the year is key in a successful environment and we have certainly done this again in 2015.”

“Podium Ambition has been set up with the passion to create opportunity for women to race and achieve their potential and it is always brilliant to see the purple and pink of a team mate cross the finish line with another victory. This is an exciting group of riders to be around, but we have also been fortunate enough to work with a committed group of volunteers who support the team at races throughout the season. Without the support of these volunteers, alongside our sponsors and supporters, the success we have had would not have been possible.”

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