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WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina — Premier Sports Group, the owner of Team SmartStop, announced that it will launch a new UCI-registered women’s team for 2015.
Team principal James Bennett said, “At first, the women’s program seemed to be supported by sponsor requests for another product from Premier Sports Group at a different price point than the men’s program, so my motivations were originally business-related. I learned very quickly the momentum in women’s sports and how this was just the right thing to do.”
The team’s name is to be announced in the coming weeks, and it will focus on the USA Cycling National Racing Calendar, American UCI women’s races, and some international racing.
This news comes as major American races like the USA Pro Challenge and Amgen Tour of California are expanding their women’s racing schedules.
“Cycling needs more women’s UCI teams, and the UCI races are stepping up with more inclusion for women across the globe, so Premier Sports Group stepping up is the natural progression,” Bennett said in a press release. “We are finding great relationships with the largest races on the continent by having a men’s and women’s team, a great way to find new sponsors as well as keeping old sponsors and heralding a flag for an underrepresented demographic in the world’s hardest sport.”
Premier Sports Group will introduce the women’s team, roster, and 2015 racing calendar in the coming weeks.