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Honda powers dreams with new women’s squad

Rochelle Gilmore checks out the Cronulla course ahead of this weekend's race.

Rochelle Gilmore checks out the Cronulla course ahead of this weekend's race. (Image credit: John Veage)

Rochelle Gilmore will spearhead the Honda Dream Team throughout the Australian summer, with the Japanese car manufacturer increasing its support of local cycling with the new team’s formation. The six-strong team will contest races like this weekend’s Cronulla Grand Prix and Melbourne’s Jayco Bay Series held in January.

Gilmore will be joined on the squad by fellow professional Tiffany Cromwell, who rode for Colavita-Sutter Home in the United States of America this year.

“There is a lot of strong competition but we’re confident that we’ve got the right mix of girls to pull it off,” said Gilmore. “We’ve put together a really strong team with a couple of sprinters plus Tiffany Cromwell is going very strong and is always a great worker, but if she got away on her own could win herself.”

Youngsters Chloe Hosking and Sky-Lee Armstrong will be balanced by the experience of Liz Georgouras and Nimesha Smith on the squad. This weekend’s Cronulla Grand Prix will be the team’s debut race and Gilmore says the priority is ensuring one of the team’s riders takes home the crown.

“As much as I want to win this race the first priority is for the Honda Dream Team to win in Cronulla, whether it’s me or one of the other members of the team,” she said. “ We’ve all raced together at some point throughout the year, but not necessarily as a complete team, so we’ll take a look at the course today and get together on Saturday to plan how we will race on Sunday.”

Honda experimented with sponsorship of Australian women’s cycling in October, taking the naming rights title for the Honda Hybrid women’s Tour, run in conjunction with the Jayco Herald Sun Tour.

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