TIBCO’s Meredith Miller is headed for the International Cycling Union World Championships after claiming the elite women’s United States of America Road Championship title. The super domestique’s national title assures her a slot on USA Cycling’s team for this year’s championships, which will be held in Mendrisio, Switzerland.
“To be honest I never even thought about it [World’s selection],” said Miller. “Yes, I would like to go compete at the World Championship. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.”
Miller has an extensive palmares including a three year term with the Danish Team Sats. She returned State-side in 2006 to compete for two years with Team Lipton alongside Kristin Armstrong. She then joined Aaron’s for the 2008 season before signing on board with TIBCO in 2009.
The TIBCO squad began to put a mark on the American peloton in 2004 when Linda Jackson, a former Canadian national champion, took over what was the California-based Palo Alto team. The squad has its sight set on becoming UCI-registered team in 2010, focused on competing overseas on the UCI World Cup circuit and contending some of Europe's most well known stage races.
“If we go to Europe next year I think we will be able to give them a run for their money as well,” Miller said. “So many girls on this team have Euro experience.”
With no road races left on the National Racing Calendar for women, the first place finisher Miller will have little opportunity to wear her stars and stripe jersey. “All I have left are crits and I can’t wear my road jersey in those,” Miller said. “Bummer, I’ll have to go find some road races to race just so I can wear it this year.”
Millar outsmarted a breakaway of five talented riders to take her first ever national championship after 11 years of racing. The win could have gone to any one of her seven TIBCO team-mates, according to Millar.
“I don’t know what to say, I have never been a national champion before,” said Miller. who is best-known for her selfless work as a domestique. “I was in the break and once it was clear that it was going to stay, I was thinking, ‘Ok, Meredith, you’re not normally in this position so don’t screw it up’.”
Miller made her winning move with two kilometres remaining, holding off Chrissy Ruiter (Value Act Capital) in second place and Kristin LaSasso in third place. Amy Dombroski (Webcor-Builders) finished fourth and captured the U23 US National Road Title. Kori Seehaffer (Team Type 1), who initiated the break finished fifth.
The TIBCO team included Miller, 2008 champion Brooke Miller, Lauren Tamayo, Katharine Carroll, Alison Starnes, Amber Rais and U23 rider Jerika Hutchinson.
“We had so many other cards to play,” said Miller. “We are all about team work and laying it down for each other. It’s been amazing having such strong teammates and having support and encouragement from everyone. I’m confident that any one of us could have won.”