With the growth of women’s cycling, happily also comes the growth in the number of women’s cycling teams. Our readers have been inspired by many professional and amateur teams over the year, but the following teams gained the most nominations, making our list of finalists in the Women's Cycling Team of the Year category for the Total Women's Cycling Awards in association with Velo Vixen.
From some of the biggest teams in the world, to the domestic champions, these groups of women work together to win races, medals and respect.
There can be little argument as to the exhilaration of watching a pro-women’s race after the excitement in big events like the Giro D’Italia Femminile, La Course by La Tour de France and the Friends Life Women’s Tour. We’re looking forward to seeing these teams in action again in 2015.
This category not only reflects the top end of cycling, your nominations also reflected the importance of amateur teams to women's cycling.
The winner of this category will be announced at the Total Women’s Cycling Awards ceremony at The London Bike Show in February 2015 - stand by for more info.
To make sure your favourite team come out on top, be sure to get voting.
Matrix Fitness - Vulpine
This domestic team have long been a feature of UK racing scene, but 2014 was an incredible year for Matrix Fitness - Vulpine. As the only domestic team to ride in the Friends Life Women’s Tour, they won hearts and minds as they battled through the challenging stages, gaining international recognition. They’re vocal supporters of professional women’s cycling, helping mentor young riders up through the ranks. They also announced an incredible new lineup for 2015 that includes Elinor Barker and Laura Trott OBE.
Managed by the indomitable Rochelle Gilmore, Wiggle Honda are arguably the most famous women’s pro-cycling road team in the UK. In their distinctive black and orange kit, they’ve raced some of the biggest events of 2014, including the Friends Life Women’s Tour and La Course, the new one day event on the final part of La Tour de France route.
As a result of their work and triumphs over 2014, Boels Dolman finished the year ranked second in the world overall as a team. With major victories in the Ronde van Drenthe and the Tour of Flanders, earned with skilled teamwork, the lineup also boasts a Luxembourgish National Road and Time Trial Champion in the form of Christine Majerus. Team rider Lizzie Armitstead concluded the season ranked first overall.
Featuring national champions galore, Rabo Liv are one of the most talented, professional teams in the women’s pro-peloton. They took victory at the Friend’s Life Women’s Tour, the inaugural La Course by La Tour de France, and riders placed first, second and third in the 2014 Giro D’Italia Femminile or Giro Rosa. Team riders have won both the French and Dutch national Time Trial and Road Championship titles over the yera.
A brand new elite national pro-cycling team for 2014, Starley Primal were launched with a fanfare at the London Bike Show in 2014. The focus is very much on developing up young new talent, and with the strapline ‘the people’s team’ they is to be inclusive and engaging, as well as training and racing hard.
A British amateur team of riders who race anything from track to road to cyclocross to mountain bike. MuleBar Girls are an inspiring group of women, including Anna Glowinski, Wiesia Kuczaj and Rebecca Chorlton. They’re also highly involved in the cycling industry in general, working from the inside to push forward women’s cycling. Team MuleBar Girl - Sigma Sport are ranked second overall the Johnson Healthtech Grand Prix Series, with individual riders Natalie Creswick and Louise Mahe taking 2nd and 4th spots respectively.
Shutt Squadra Donne
British Team Shutt Squadra Donne is well known on the UK racing scene. With riders aged from 15 up to 50 years old, it’s an inclusive and supportive team, but also extremely professionally run. They’ve been racing in the Johnson Healthtech Grand Prix series over 2014.