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Specialized Mazda Samson Team 2009 Launch

by John Symon

May 4, 2009 (Montreal, QC) — The 2009 Specialized Mazda Samson (SMS) women’s team was presented at a press conference in Montreal today using the Premier Studio (Power Watt) spinning studio as the venue. Team president Gerard Pennaroya described his team objectives in 2009 to be: 1) having the best Canadian team at the Montreal Womens World Cup; 2) to have at least one girl finish in the top three at the Canadian Championships and 3) to send a few girls to France, as he has already done with Audrey Lemieux. Pennaroya also indicated he was very pleased with Karol-Ann Canuel’s win on Sunday, May 3 at the GP de Brossard.

The team includes:

– Karol-Anne Canuel
– Natasha Elliott
– Elisa Gagnon (captain)
– Mathilde Hupin (bronze medalist at 2008 Beijing Paralympics)
– Julie Marceau
РGenevi̬ve Ouellet (bronze medalist at 2008 Beijing Paralympics)
– Kyla Rollinson
– Mary Zider

Also present today was Audrey Lemieux, wearing the colours of the French-based GSD Gestion team for whom she also rides. Lemieux is beginning her season with SMS before going to France to ride for GSD. Clara Hughes is part of the 2009 SMS team, in the role of mentor and not racing this season. Hupin, who competed on a tandem in the Beijing Paralympics will also ride individually in the Tour du Grand Montreal. SMS will support both Hupin and Ouellet in tandem riding.

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