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Niamh Fisher-Black signs with SD Worx

IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 26 Niamh FisherBlack of New Zealand during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Road Race a 143km race from Imola to Imola Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 26 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images
Niamh Fisher-Black (Image credit: Getty Images)

Boels Dolmans announced Friday that they have signed New Zealand road race champion Niamh Fisher-Black to their newly-named SD Worx team through 2022. The team confirmed their 14-rider roster after also extending with Canadian Karol-Ann Canuel.

"I'm still discovering my possibilities as a cyclist," said Fisher-Black. "Everyone in the peloton sees how dominant Boels-Dolmans can be on rides. I'm very proud to be part of this winning team. I think it will be an ideal learning opportunity for me."

Fisher-Black was part of the Equipe Paule Ka team which announced that they would fold immediately, in October, after they had not received the agreed upon sponsorship funding from financial backer Paule Ka. She began her pro career with that team as a trainee when it was under the title sponsorship of Bigla-Katusha in 2019.

She is a strong climber and an up-and-coming stage race talent. This season, she won the national road race title and placed second on a stage at the Giro Rosa.

"I'm at my best during stage races and classics with lots of climbs," she said. "I was very pleased to already be riding the Giro Rosa this year. That I made it to second place in the final stage gave me huge satisfaction. It also goes to show that I recover well from heavy exertion."

Team manager Danny Stam said the team will help Fisher-Black develop and progress during the next two seasons at SD Worx, and he envisions a successful career for the New Zealander.

"It's only a matter of time before Fisher-Black establishes herself as one of the absolute world leaders on climbs," said Stam. "She surprised us all during the Giro Rosa ascent. She has a tremendously athletic body and she impressed our riders with how she handled the tricky bits. I'm convinced she will continue to make a lot of progress in our team."

Boels Dolmans also announced that they have extended a one-year contract with Canuel. The Canadian has spent five season with the team and plays a crucial role as a support rider and their success on the world ranking.

"I've been part of the team ever since it became number one in the world," Canuel said. "The members of the team have really become my friends over the past few years. I find that rough terrain shows me off to the greatest advantage. I have no problem leaving the limelight to such champions as Anna van der Breggen and Chantal Blaak. 

"It's a special thing to be part of a team with so many wins and know you played a part in that. The team already had an international feeling to it, but with SD Worx as the new main sponsor, the mix will include even more nationalities. I welcome that."

Boels Dolmans, which will become SD Worx as of January 1, 2021, have now confirmed their 14-rider roster: Anna van der Breggen, Chantal Blaak, Amy Pieters, Lonneke Uneken, Demi Vollering, Jolien d’Hoore, Christine Majerus, Elena Cecchini, Roxane Fournier, Anna Shackley, Ashleigh Moolman, Nikola Noskova, Karol-Ann Canuel and Niamh Fisher-Black.

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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.