Canadian National Champion Veronique Fortin (front right) sets the pace with her Team TIBCO teammates.
Photo: Larry Rosa.
Team TIBCO is headed to Quebec, Canada this weekend to contest the Grand Prix Cycliste Gatineau Féminin – one of North America’s few UCI races. Saturday, the riders will take on the UCI 1.1-classified Chrono Gatineau Rona International Time Trial, followed by the UCI 1.1-classified women’s road race on Monday.
Team TIBCO boasts a tradition of decorated Canadian riders, including Team Founder and Director Linda Jackson. This weekend, the Team will send off Canadian National Champion Veronique Fortin, and 3-time Track World Champion and Canadian Tara Whitten to challenge the Gatineau races. For Fortin, whose hometown is not far from Gatineau, the race will provide her with an opportunity to show her peers what women’s racing is all about.
“This is like a fusion of my two worlds,” said the full-time anesthesiologist and pro racer. “People from work will come out to watch the race, so it’s a great way to promote women’s cycling.”
“I’m also excited to have my teammates here so they can discover what Quebec is all about,” Fortin added.
Saturday’s individual time trial will take the riders through two laps of a technical 9.8-kilometer circuit for a total of 19.6 kilometers. Team TIBCO will be represented by Megan Guarnier and Whitten at the time trial.
Whitten will be a strong contender. She has a National Time Trial Championship under her belt, in addition to winning the 2010 Commonwealth Games TT. Guarnier comes to Gatineau in hot pursuit of UCI points toward her bid for Olympic selection. The Olympic long team member is capable of a strong performance; her first place finish at the Redlands Classic time trial earlier this season propelled her to overall victory at the NRC stage race.
On Monday, the Team will send a six-person squad to go head to head with top international riders as they contest the Grand Prix Cycliste Gatineau road race. The course will take riders around a 10.1-kilometer rolling route for 13 laps, totalling 134 kilometers. Guarnier, Whitten and Fortin will be joined by Team TIBCO teammates Kendall Ryan, Lauren Hall and Jennifer Purcell.
For more information, visit: http://www.grandprixcyclistegatineau.com/?lang=en.