Team TIBCO continues their European tour with the one-day semi-Classic Cholet-Pays de Loire in western France this Sunday March 17. The Team sends a 6-rider squad of seasoned European riders to contest the UCI 1.2 level race. Hungry for victory, Shelley Olds will join teammates Jasmin Glaesser, Chantal Blaak, Claudia Hausler, Samantha Schneider and Rushlee Buchanan.
The 116-kilometer course will take riders through a 29-kilometer circuit 4 times, starting in the town of Cholet at 12:10 p.m. The race is often compared to the Belgian classics due to its short, punchy hills, rain and windy conditions. Eleven UCI teams and 10 French continental teams totalling 145 riders are set to start Sunday’s event. The race will include a Sprint and Queen of the Mountain competition.
Two notable climbs will break up this race, including a steep kicker in La Tessoualle. A gradual gradient will quickly ramp up to the double-digits near the climb’s peak. La Tessoualle will be the first “Climber’s Point” in the QOM competition with 3 laps to go. Next up, two sprint points will animate the race as riders approach Le Puy-Saint Bonnet, followed by another sprint point in Saint Christophe as the race heads north-west.
The lead-up to the next noteworthy climb will feature narrow passages through Le Seguiniere. Again, riders and teams will fight to stay at the front as they aim to stay in contention up the final climb of the circuit. Four laps of climbs and sprint points will surely wear on the entire peloton. With UCI points up for grabs for the top 8 finishers, riders will be especially aggressive as they battle for a top finish.