Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank has not missed an edition of the North Star Grand Prix (formerly called the Nature Valley Grand Prix) since it first competed in the event in 2005. 2006 was a special year for the team as team Founder Linda Jackson recalls: “ We had a new rider on the team, Brooke Miller. It was her first year of racing and she “screamed to victory” in the Cannon Falls road race, upsetting all of the favorites. That race was the start of a terrific career for Brooke and was one of those special moments in the team’s history that I will never forget."
The team went on to win the race in 2013 and again in 2016 with Brianna Walle. "Last year, Brie Walle won the opening individual time trial and the team was able to defend her lead through the successive five stages", commented Sports Director Ed Beamon. “With the combination of road races and criteriums, the North Star Grand Prix requires a good grasp of multiple disciplines. The final stage in Stillwater is brutally hard and will require disciplined team riding and strong individual effort. We are looking forward to a week of tough, tactical racing."
It is the 18th year of the event presented by North Memorial Health. The race starts with a short 5-mile Individual Time Trial on Wednesday morning followed by the St Paul Criterium later in the day. Sunday’s final stage, the Stillwater Criterium, includes the brutal Chilkoot Hill, a climb that pitches up to 24%. The stage is lined with throngs of spectators and is an exciting stage to watch live as the overall classification is often blown to pieces by the difficulty of the stage.
Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank roster:
Kate Buss (USA)
Ingrid Drexel (MEX)
Heather Fischer (USA)
Lindsay Myers (USA)
Madeleine Park (NZL)
Kendall Ryan (USA)
Jenifer Tetrick (USA)
Brianna Walle (USA)
Rookie screams to win in second stage of Nature Valley Grand Prix
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Images: Jonathan Devich