January 7, 2008 – The French Women’s UCI professional team ESGL-93 GSD Gestion has quietly been working it’s way up through the rankings of World and European cycling over the past few seasons and this steady approach sees the team looking forward to their best ever year in 2009 while an alarming number of other UCI women’s team are either folding or struggling to find funding for the season ahead.
During 2008 the team not only became the number one women’s team in France but is also bolstered it’s ranks with a strong English speaking contingent comprising of Canadians Audrey Lemieux and Joelle Numainville as well as the English Rider Leda Cox. Apart from the Luxembourg Time Trial Champion and leading French under 23 rider Christine Majerous the core of the team are French.
2008 saw ESGL-93 GSD Gestion confirm their status as the best team in the French Cup series which was completed in immaculate style by Leda Cox winning the final round in Loudun (see photo) but it also gave them a chance to demonstrate their strength in depth in the international UCI and world cup races. The World Cup Finale at Plouay saw the team come tantalisingly close to a podium place with Beatrice Thomas’ last lap breakaway as she chased down the leaders on the run in.
It is a position that the team aims to be in far more regularly in the 2009 season and to kick things off in style the ESGL team recently held an off season training and team bonding camp at Chambery in the French Alps (see photo on mountain top). The camp included cross country skiing and rock climbing and also gave a chance for the teams newest recruits to get to know their “˜co-equipiers’ to use their french name. Laurena Cussy and Jennifer Letue are two of the most promising French Juniors and they will be learning the ropes from the team’s more seasoned pros in 2009.
One of the keys to the team’s stability undoubtedly has to be their firm grounding and support from the Paris based cycling club “˜ESGL-93 “˜ out of which the team grew and also the generous support shown by Jaques Gautier. the owner of the French Business analysis firm GSD Gestion who just so happens to be (and here lies the key..) the team’s general manager.
2009 will see the team fully kitted out by Specialized on their latest Tarmac Pro machines and the companies Cyril Immobilier, Ital’ passion, Look and Mavic will all be backing the team throughout the year. Their early season plans should see them tackling such classics as Het Volk in Belgium and the GP Lago Maggiorre in Switzerland. Visit the team’s website at www.team-esgl93.fr/
The 2009 ESGL-93 GSD Gestion team consists of:
– COX Leda (GBR
– LEMIEUX Audrey (Can)
– PATOU Estelle (Fra)
– BELZ Elodie (Fra)
– BIDEAU Sandrine (Fra)
– CADOL Nathalie (Fra)
– CREUX Sophie (Fra)
– GAUTIER Fabienne (Fra)
– MAJERUS Christine (Lux)
– NIVET CÃ©line (Fra)
– NUMAINVILLE Joelle (Can)
– THOMAS BÃ©atrice (Fra)
– CUSSY Laurena (Fra)
– LETUÃ‰ Jennifer (Fra)