This Friday, February 4, at 10:30 am, Team Spidertech powered by C10 holds a press event at the Hockey Hall of Fame to officially launch its 2011 season.
Why is that so historic? In the off-season, Team Spidertech powered by C10 became the first Canadian cycling team to earn a Professional Continental license from the Union Cycliste International (UCI), the sport’s governing body.
The UCI Continental circuits are international bicycle racing’s Tier 2 events.
What’s Tier 1? The UCI World Tour: the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia, the Vuelta a España. In other words, Team SpiderTech is now one step away from competing at bicycle racing’s highest level – and the plan is to do so within the next few years.
Toronto Criterium 2010
How Canadian is Team SpiderTech? The red and white starts at the top. The team’s manager and driving force is Steve Bauer, the only Canadian to wear the yellow jersey on more than one occasion, doing so a remarkable 14 times in 11 Tours de France.
16 of the 19 SpiderTech riders are Canadian and all the riders are from North America.
Even the bikes are Canadian, custom made for the team by Argon 18 of Montreal.
All the team’s major sponsors are Canadian, including RIM, Saputo, Nucap Medical (SpiderTech), PineTree Capital and Planet Energy.
How good is Team SpiderTech? A top 10 finish in the Tour of California – against Lance and many other Tour de France riders – capped the team’s very successful 2010 season.
Locally, they placed six riders in the top 10 of the Toronto Criterium, including first to fourth places, and four riders in the top 10 of the Queen’s Park Grand Prix.
Individually, many team members produced personal best performances and Guillame Boivin of Longueuil, Que., placed third at the U23 World Championships in Australia.
Toronto Criterium 2010
But the team has added even more pedal-power since the end of the season, including:
- Will Routly – Canadian Road Race Champion
- Hugo Houle – Canadian U23 Road Race Champion
- Zach Bell – 2009 and 2011 silver medalist at the UCI Track Cycling World Championship
Most recently, Team SpiderTech signed their highest profile rider, Svein Tuft, of Langley, BC. A 2008 World Championship silver medalist and stage winner on the UCI World Tour, Svein brings two years of World Tour experience to the team.
Along with another recent signing, Pat McCarty, and 2010 team member Lucas Euser, Tuft gives Team SpiderTech three riders with experience on the World Tour.
A Canadian team playing on cycling’s world stage is not just a source of national pride. If anything will give cycling a stronger voice in Canada, stifle the Toronto naysayers and garner the attention that cycling deserves, it will be success at the highest level. It will be when the members of Team SpiderTech ride along the Champs Elysee, champagne in their hands and the maple leaf on their backs. It will be historic.
And to that I say – GO TEAM SPIDERTECH GO!!
The Globe & Mail
The Toronto Sun
Posted: February 1st, 2011
Author: Stephen Da Cambra
Filed under: Cycling Events, Cycling News
Tags: bicycle, bikes, criterium, cycling, racing, Toronto, uci | 3 Comments »
Ever have a sight, sound or smell bring back a lost memory? I love to check out bicycles as I walk or ride along, looking at the different brands, colours and types and thinking about the personalities who ride them. Two weeks ago, one bike made me do a double-take. It was something I hadn’t seen since about 1970. Something I used to stare at for hours; that filled my chest with pride. It was the near forgotten, but immediately familiar again logo of an Eaton’s Glider, soaring gull and all. My first bike was a Glider.
Do you remember your first bike?
Unlike the 3-speed model with the classic Sturmey-Archer thumb shifter that I saw the other week, mine was a 23” coaster, but with similar fenders, seat and striping.
Shopping used to be so much easier before the internet. In the days of catalogue shopping, to order a bike; you picked up the phone; dialed the Eaton’s order line (always answered – by a human); gave them a catalogue number and that weekend, when all your friends were about, the Eaton’s truck would appear on your street to deliver your new bike, assembled, to your door.
Or that’s how it should’ve happened.
The truth is that we took delivery of my green with white fenders Glider (I think the chrome fenders were a feature of the geared models) before the snow melted and its first weeks were spent propped against a basement wall. That’s how I got so familiar with the gliding gull on the front badge – for weeks I could do little else than teeter on the bike and stare at the logo.
I know you’ve heard this a million times, but I really was always the last one picked for sports teams; couldn’t hit a ball, skate or run to save my life. I was picked second-to-last once, when we played the pre-schoolers. With no budget for training wheels, prospects were dim for me learning to ride in a reasonable time.
Benny, a good friend of our family who is now in his 70s and still a very nifty guy, volunteered. I started off ready for it to take hours, if not days. On my second pass I thought I was going a little fast for Ben to keep up and I turned slightly to check on him, but he wasn’t there. I can’t remember ever learning anything, that previously seemed so daunting, so easily. But being a quick learner has its downsides. Unprepared for my early success, Benny hadn’t yet shown me how to stop.
I fell off the bike a lot that first summer. I got the nick-name Sergeant for all the band-aids that neatly lined my knees.
Life changed. I fractioned my school commutes. I didn’t have to run after my cycling friends to keep up. And slamming the always reliable coaster brakes laid a patch a mile long.
The Glider was stolen twice. Once from the side of our house, but the police quickly returned it. The second time, it was gone when I got out of my Cub Scout meeting. After a long search, I made a late-night, non-stop run home from Lawrence to Ellesmere, crying all the way for the loss of my Glider. I never saw it or the soaring gull again.
Until two weeks ago.
My research since shows the Eaton’s Glider to be a coveted classic on the local bike market. But I haven’t seen a coaster. Got any info?
…OR DO YOU HAVE MY FREAKIN’ BIKE?!! ;)
Posted: April 20th, 2010
Author: Stephen Da Cambra
Filed under: Uncategorized
Tags: bicycles, bikes, commutes, cycling | 12 Comments »