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by Neal Rogers
October 18, 2016
In your Tuesday edition of the CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Van der Poel victorious at Hansgrohe Superprestige Zonhoven; 2017 UCI America Tour calendar includes new races in Colorado, Virginia, Idaho; Sam Bennett a victim of extreme heat at Qatar world championships; Strickland, Stumhofer win inaugural Red Bull Last Stand fixed-gear eliminator criterium at Alamo Plaza; David Millar pens opinion piece in New York Times addressing ‘TUE culture’ in pro cycling; Louis Vuitton luxury goods conglomerate poised to buy Pinarello; Hagens Berman-Supermint bolsters 2017 roster with Aussie Peta Mullens, American Jessica Cerra; Seven-time masters world champion Steve Tilford hospitalized with skull fracture; Video: Brandon Semenuk’s flawless winning run at Red Bull Rampage.
American women’s road team Hagens Berman-Supermint has bolstered its 2017 roster with the signing of multiple-time Australian road and mountain-bike national champion Peta Mullens. Mullens most recently rode for Wiggle-Honda, before switching focus to mountain biking in 2016.
“Last year was a bit of a soul-finding year for me,” Mullens said. “I didn’t perform the way I’d hoped on the mountain bike in the early season and was only named reserve for the Olympics. So I planned a last minute adventure to the U.S. and had the time of my life. I knew I had to come back in 2017. I spoke to a few teams before deciding that Hagens Berman-Supermint was the team for me, the fit is perfect. [Team management] offered the most flexibility in my race calendar to allow me to focus on a few season goals for 2017 including the Tour of California and a home mountain-bike world championships in Cairns, Australia.”
Mullens will be the only non-American on the team’s 10-woman roster, led by all-rounder Scotti Lechuga, who won the QOM jersey at the San Dimas Stage Race, won the opening stage of the Redlands Bicycle Classic, and finished in the top 10 at the Tour of the Gila and Joe Martin Stage Race.
The team also added American Jessica Cerra, a talented climber who raced for Twenty15-Ridebiker in 2016 until a dramatic crash on the opening day of Tour of the Gila ended her season. “The injuries were severe and the recovery was long, but for some reason I felt the happiest I had ever felt,” Cerra said. “Humility and gratitude can go a long way in developing a strong athlete, it’s not all physical, and you mature and learn through trials, tribulations, and comebacks. Five months after the crash, I’m feeling stronger than ever, like I have a renewed spirit for riding and racing my bike in 2017.”
The full 2017 Supermint-Hagens Berman roster: Megan Alderete, Ivy Audrain, Lindsay Bayer, Jessica Cerra, Julie Kuliecza, Scotti Lechuga, Peta Mullens, Beth Ann Orton, Liza Rachetto, and Starla Teddergreen.