Team TIBCO is entering its second year in partnership with clothing sponsor Voler. The difference was noticeable in year one, with the company providing a significant step up not only in fit and quality from the Team’s previous clothing provider, but also in support.
“As a company, we feel it’s very important to support cycling at all levels,” says Voler’s National Sales Manager, Jim Helser. “So we work with a pretty good mix of teams – regional, national and international; road, cross and mountain bike. That also includes women’s cycling.
“Naturally, we wanted to work with the strongest women’s pro team in the U.S.,” he continued. “So when we looked at partnerships for 2010, it was an easy decision for us to sponsor Team TIBCO. The women are exceptional athletes, and are wonderful ambassadors for our company. Most of all, they are a pleasure to work with. And now that they’ve added a Juniors team for 2011, it allows us to expand our support of women’s cycling in more areas.”
In turn, both parties are looking to take the partnership to an entirely new level in 2011. Fittingly, Team TIBCO will be racing and training in Voler’s top fabrics and cuts this year. The Team will use Voler’s elite fabrics on the bottoms along with their FS Pro cut. But Voler is already looking down the road at what’s next, and is looking to Team TIBCO to help guide the way there.
Bay Area racing fixture, Kimberly White, has joined Voler as their new product developer, and Helser notes, “She’s putting in a lot of time evaluating our women’s line. She plans to get into details with the riders when they’re here for training camp later this month.”
Voler is already developing new products for the riders to test, such as a new women’s-specific time trial skinsuit, as well as a new chamois being developed through Italy for the riders to try out.
“There are a few items that we also hope to have available for the women to test that will be sold through our store only and not as custom items for teams,” Helser adds. “The feedback we get from the riders over the course of the season will be essential to our women’s-specific product development.
“Kimberly has a good relationship with the Team already, and we have a lot of respect for the riders, from the elite team down to the juniors. Obviously, women are different than men, but we also know that a lot of women have different clothing preferences. It is important for us to offer a variety of women’s specific clothing options. Our partnership with Team TIBCO will be essential to helping us achieve that.”
Meet New Rider Erinne Willock
Erinne Willock is one of three Canadians joining Team TIBCO in 2011. And while fellow countrywomen Tara Whitten and Joelle Numainville have burst onto the international scene in recent years, Erinne has quietly and consistently been one of the strongest riders in North America for nearly a decade.
Erinne joins Team TIBCO after a five year stint with Team Webcor Builders, where she was one of the stalwarts of their stage race squad. The 29-year-old began racing bikes as a teen with the support of an “active family very focused on health and wellness,” she says. Born and raised in Victoria, British Columbia, Erinne has been a mainstay on the Canadian National Team for years. She has podiumed at the Canadian National Road Championships three times and represented Canada at World Cups, the World Championships and the Olympics. In 2009, Erinne finished 7th at the World Road Championships in Mendrisio, Switzerland.
Erinne’s father, Martin, competed in the team time trial at the 1984 Olympics. Her uncle, Bernie, the 1980 Canadian road champion, was set to represent Canada in the 1980 Olympics prior to their boycott.
Erinne’s success on the bike has been well-documented over the years, but you might not know that she takes time for a big vacation with her husband each year after Worlds or that she is a self-proclaimed homebody. And though she has a deep appreciation for the outdoors and nature, she doesn’t have a single living plant in her house. No dead ones, either. “We killed too many,” she said. “My husband works way too much, and when I’m the road, they would die. So we haven’t had plants for at least five years. It’s a sad thing.”
To learn some more lesser known facts, stories and thoughts on the season that lies ahead from Erinne, click here: http://www.teamtibco.com/blog.
Recent Results and Upcoming Races
Gold Medal, Omnium, Beijing Track World Cup (Whitten)
1st U23 Australian National Road Cycling Championship (Taylor)
1st Overall, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
1st Overall, QoM Competition, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
1st Prologue, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
1st Stage 2, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
1st Stage 3, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
2nd New Zealand National Road Race Championship (Sheridan)
2nd Stage 1, Hub Tour, NZ (Sheridan)
3rd U23 Australian National Time Trial Championship (Taylor)
Team Training Camp, Feb. 19-25, Carpinteria, CA
Snelling Road Race, Snelling, CA, Feb. 26
Merced Criterium, Merced, CA, Feb. 27