SILVERY CITY, NM - APRIL 22: Stage 5 of the Tour of The Gila on April 22, 2018 in Silver City, New Mexico. (Photo by Jonathan Devich/Epicimages.us)

Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank today announced the addition of key personnel to lead its expanded calendar as the team prepares for the 2019 racing season. Rachel Hedderman, the first female director at a men’s WorldTour event, Olympian and former member of Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank (2008), will be joining the team as Program Manager and Head Sports Director. Hedderman joins the team after a successful nine years of directing women’s teams including the last five years of directing the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling team (UHC). Also joining the team as Sports Director will be Ruud Verhagen (NED), who has extensive experience on the European circuit working with women’s trade teams and with the Dutch national program.

“I am delighted to have Rachel and Ruud on board,” said Linda Jackson, Founder and General Manager of Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank. “Their combined experience, both as riders and directors, will be hugely beneficial to our team as we target even more of the UCI Women’s World Tour (WWT) calendar and key races across North America in 2019.

“I’ve known Rachel since 2007 when we brought her on board for the 2008 racing season. She was a terrific athlete and teammate, and I’ve been following her management success as she has developed into a successful world-tour level Director. Rachel will be a strong asset to our team as we continue to build the program.”

Hedderman launched her cycling career in 2001 when she joined British Cycling’s World Class Performance Plan. As a rider, Hedderman secured multiple silver medals at the British National Road Race Championships (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007), a bronze at the Commonwealth Games and represented Great Britain in the UCI World Championships, the Commonwealth Games and the Olympic Games. Following her extensive racing career, Hedderman moved to team management, where she has had a highly successful track record achieving numerous results with teams including Colavita (2010-2011), Optum Pro Cycling (2012-2013) and most recently, UHC Pro Cycling (2014-2018). In 2014, Hedderman made history as the first woman to direct a men’s professional cycling team at a WorldTour event at Milan-San Remo.

“I am very happy to be joining Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank,” said Hedderman. “Linda has put together a really strong and well-rounded roster, and I am excited to see what we can achieve together. I raced for Team TIBCO over 10 years ago when the team was in its early days as a domestic team, and it is great to see how the team has grown over the years. I am looking forward to returning to the team as a Director and help the team continue to evolve. This year, Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank has had one if its most successful seasons to date, especially given the challenges of combining a WWT and North American Calendar, but I believe there is more to come in 2019.”

Hailing from the Netherlands, Ruud Verhagen will join Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank as Sports Director. Following his career as a rider, Verhagen began working as a director, trainer and coach in 2000 and has been a full-time talent coach for the Dutch Federation. Verhagen completed the level five training course from the Dutch Olympic Committee, the highest level of coaching/training in the Netherlands. Verhagan built a training centre in Limburg, where he worked to develop junior and U23 riders, a program that has fostered riders like Tom Dumoulin. Verhagen has also directed the Rabobank women’s team, Argos-Shimano (later Giant-Shimano) and Hitec Products-Birk Sports, with a focus on developing talent.

“I’m really happy to become part of a team that has such a long history in the peloton and has so much potential,” said Verhagen. “I look forward to helping the women of Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank learn the European way of racing and team tactics that will make them stronger, individually and as a team. This year, I hope to bring each individual rider on the team to a higher level.”

Jackson added, “We have built a great team for 2019. We have a great group of ten returning riders joined by three new riders. Rachel and Ruud join returning Assistant Director and Logistics Manager Patricia Schwager (UCI Director Sportif certified) and Doug Torres (mechanic). New soigneur Suzanne Sonye, joining from the men’s Rally team, rounds out the management team. We’re entering into the next phase of our program, and having Rachel, Ruud and Suzanne on board will be a huge benefit as we work to set our riders up for success in 2020 and beyond.”

Originating out of the Palo Alto Bicycles Women’s team (PABW) in 2004, Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank has grown from a primarily North American, local program, to an internationally-ranked team that competed in the majority UCI WWT calendar this year.

In 2006, racing as PABW Powered by TIBCO, the team was ranked 36th in the country, up from 60th the year before. By 2009, Team TIBCO Silicon Valley Bank was ranked as the number one team in the country, a distinction which it earned again in 2013 and 2014 despite the initiation of a European program which began in 2010. The team has produced numerous national champions, including Brooke Miller, Meredith Miller, Megan Garnier and Kendall Ryan and developed riders like Samantha and Skylar Schneider. In 2018, Team TIBCO – Silicon Valley Bank secured three National Championship titles (Mexico, Guatemala and Australia). The 2018 season saw the team compete in over 75% of the UCI Women’s World Tour, and the team plans on expanding this participation in 2019.