From amateur rider to qualified UCI Sports Director – Patricia Schwager
One of the cornerstone values of Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank and the Silicon Valley Cycling Foundation is to support the aspirations of women in sport. In a culture dominated by men, both at the sporting level and the management level, the Team’s Founder, Linda Jackson, is dedicated to providing opportunities for women both on and off the bike.
Patricia raced for 17 years with several top professional teams including Cervélo TestTeam, Nederland Bloeit and Faren-Kuota before she joined Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank in 2014. She had a very successful athletic career, including winning six Swiss National Championships.
While racing for the team, Patricia was widely noted as being an invaluable teammate. She always put the team’s needs above her own was the first to pitch in wherever needed. When an injury forced Patricia to retire from riding competitively in 2016, the Team’s founder, Linda Jackson, was quick to offer Patricia a spot on the Team’s staff.
“Patricia was the best teammate I have ever had on the team” Jackson said. “When she was ready to retire, I knew that I wanted to keep her involved with our team.” Patricia moved into the management of the team taking over the role of Logistics Manager. Booking all the teams flights, hotels, host housing are amongst the wide array of critical duties she now carries out.
In 2016 Patricia was offered a grant from cycling’s international governing body, the UCI, to attend the UCI Sports Director course. In a sport largely dominated by male Directors, Patricia successfully completed the course and is now a qualified UCI Sports Director, one of very few women in the cycling community who have completed this transition. Patricia wants to use her experience to help young riders grow and take the next steps in their cycling careers.
Patricia’s first opportunity in this role will be to take the reins as the Sports Director for the Team at the UCI Women’s World Tour Chongming Island race in May. “This is a very big step for me. I was DS for the Collegiate All Stars Team last year at the North Star GP, but of course...directing at a WorldTour event is for sure another thing altogether. We are sending a pretty young squad that will really benefit from participating at the World Tour level.”
“To be a part of the longest running professional women's cycling team in North America is awesome. We have the best group of riders and staff you could ever want to work with.”
“I am just thrilled to be able to give Patricia this opportunity” said Jackson. “She has always been an incredible teammate, and she has a lot of passion for this sport. I want to keep people like Patricia motivated to stay in this sport for a long time to come!”
You can watch the UCI video feature on Patricia’s Sports Director course here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXFhBsrEkIQ
Main Image : Patricia Schwager in the Volvo team car at Tour of the Gila Image: Jonathan Devich