February 19, 2006 – Wyeth Consumer Healthcare through its brands AdvilÂ® and ChapStickÂ®, will be the title sponsor of a newly formed women’s elite cycling team for 2006. Team AdvilÂ®-ChapStickÂ® based in Northern NJ will compete in both regional and national races, with a focus on the East Coast NRC races.
“We’re very fortunate to have a sponsor as supportive as Wyeth Consumer Healthcare. They’ve been great to work with, and we hope this is the start of a long relationship,” said Heather Labance. “Both Advil and ChapStick products are popular among active, outdoor oriented people, and as a team we’re very proud to be representing them. The team has been training together for 2 months now and we’re very excited about the 2006 season. We’re expecting results both regionally and nationally.”
Direction of the Team for NRC races will be provided by The Women’s Development Program, run by Mike Engleman and Chris Davidson. They will be guiding a very talented group of women led by all rounder Heather Labance, who started 2005 by winning Grant’s Tomb Crit. She went on to win 13 more races, finished on the podium at Univest Grand Prix, and also guest rode for Quark on several occasions. Labance will be joined by Mara Miller, winner of Bear Mountain Fall Classic and the GC in the Cat 3 Fitchburg Stage Race, along with three of the stages. Collegiate rider Anna Drakulich who finished 6th in the 2005 Collegiate Nationals Road Race, was 2nd overall in the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference Points Series and won the Cat 3 Tour de Toona Points Race; Emma Nelson, an up and coming all rounder and guest rider for TEAm Lipton in Bermuda, climbers Reem Jishi and Diana Panchyk and crit specialist Julie Reid.
The goal of the program is to provide opportunities for riders to develop and learn in a team environment as they begin to make the steps needed to race at the highest level. Management and structure has been provided through an affiliation with Team Sports Inc, of Wisconsin. “This was a great opportunity for Team Sports to help develop women’s cycling and show that women cyclists are a viable sponsorship option” said Jim Williams of Team Sports who has been working with the team.
In addition to title sponsor’s Advil and ChapStick, sponsors also include Rudy Project, Velo Saddles, Maxxis Tires, Skylands Cycling Club, Verge Sport, Bicycle Workshop, Athleticamps.com , ChampionNutrition, Trek Bikes, Minerals Sports Club, and Fido Dido.