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Colavita forms new Women’s Pro Cycling Team, cobranded with espnW

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Colavita/espnW Pro Cycling Looks to Rebuild Champion Legacy and Help Showcase Women in Cycling

Colavita has developed Colavita/espnW Pro Cycling, a new women’s pro cycling team. The team, which will also help promote espnW, ESPN’s emerging business devoted to serving female fans, will seek to grow the sport of women’s cycling with an exciting, inspiring team of athletes. The new team will compete in a variety of US-based events beginning with the SRAM Tour of the Gila on May 2 in Silver City, NM.

The formation of the Colavita/espnW team follows the disbanding of the US-based squad of Colavita/Forno d’Asolo in October 2011. That team, the #1 pro women’s team on the National Racing Calendar (NRC), was forced to discontinue after losing substantial funding. Now Colavita is back with a new mission and a new outlook on the future of women’s pro cycling.

“I knew a new business that focuses on supporting female athletes would be a perfect fit for this unique opportunity,” said John A. Profaci, Vice President of Marketing for Colavita, who acknowledged espnW’s coverage of women’s cycling competitions and ongoing support of female athletes everywhere. He added, “Assembling a team will be challenging, but there is always new talent and seasoned veterans hungry to compete. I’m confident we’ll have strong leadership, terrific racers, and a team of champion quality on and off the bike.”

Added Laura Gentile, Vice President of espnW, “Working closely with Colavita, a company committed to supporting female athletes in such a tangible way, is important to espnW. It’s a great opportunity to support the development of women’s cycling while expanding espnW’s reach in a creative way.”

espnW will capture the efforts of the Colavita/espnW athletes with features about the team’s progress. Leading those efforts will be team captain Kathryn Bertine, a three-time road and time trial national champion of St. Kitts and Nevis, who is vying for her nation’s first berth to the Olympic Games in cycling and will contribute to espnW.com.

“We’ll be out there to win, but at the same time we will celebrate the women we race with by shining a light on their accomplishments.  When we highlight one female racer, we all move forward,” added Bertine.

Colavita/espnW Pro Cycling has assembled a full team roster, which includes Moriah MacGregor, member of the Canadian National Team and multiple top-10 finisher at national championships. Directing the team will be six-time US National Champion and former Colavita pro rider Tina Pic and Iona Wynter Parks, who represented her native Jamaica at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney and directed the Colavita squad after her retirement from competitive racing. The full roster will be available at www.TeamColavita.com.

For the upcoming season, the race schedule for the Colavita/espnW Pro Cycling Team will focus on NRC and select UCI events, including:

  • SRAM Tour of the Gila (May 2-6; Silver City, NM)
  • Gatineau Grand Prix (May 18-21; Gatineau, Quebec)
  • Exergy Tour (May 24-28; Boise, ID)
  • Liberty Classic (June 3; Philadelphia, PA)
  • Nature Valley Grand Prix (June 13-17; Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN)
  • Cascade Classic Stage Race  (July 17-22; Bend, OR)
  • Tour of Elk Grove  (Aug 3-5; Elk Grove, IL)
  • Aspen/Snowmass Pro Women’s Race  (Aug 21-23; Aspen, CO)

Colavita is the largest recreational cycling organization in the US through its support of youth and amateur cyclists in over 20 states from coast-to-coast through 14 regional amateur teams. There is no fee involved to become a member and the team supplies the USA Cycling registration fees, discounts on team clothing, and special offers on the best in cycling equipment and accessories.

About Colavita USA

Family-owned Colavita USA LLC, headquartered in Edison, NJ, has been importing and distributing Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil for over 30 years. Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil is recognized as the #1 Italian brand in the US and has earned awards from renowned cooking publications such as Fine Cooking and Cook’s Illustratedand general-interest magazines like Men’s Health.

Colavita® authentic Italian specialty products, including durum wheat semolina pasta, a full selection of balsamic and wine vinegars, traditional and organic pasta sauces, and olive-canola blended oils are the ingredients of choice for chefs in home, restaurant, and professional kitchens. Colavita also markets high quality prepared foods, including marinated vegetables and the Colavita Le Zuppe line of ready-to-serve soups.

In addition, Colavita USA markets other fine food products under the Dal Raccolto® label and through partnership agreements with leading retailers, chefs, and cookbook author and TV host Rachael Ray to thousands of grocery and specialty stores and direct to many restaurants and other foodservice establishments. Colavita is also the sole importer and distributor of Perugina food and confectionery products, including the iconic Baci line, in the US.

Recognizing the company’s contribution to developing the North American market for genuine Italian extra virgin olive oil, Colavita Founder and Chairman Emeritus John J. Profaci was inducted into the Culinary Institute of America’s Hall of Fame in 2009. Colavita also supports The Colavita Center for Italian Food and Wine at the Culinary Institute of America’s Hyde Park Campus, committed to improving the quality and authenticity of Italian food in the US. For more information about Colavita USA, please visit www.Colavita.com.

About espnW

espnW’s mission is to connect female fans with the sports they love and follow.  espnW.com provides an engaging environment where women are an integral part of the sports conversation, share their perspective on men’s and women’s sports and find the motivation and support for their athletic goals and interests. Launched in October 2011, espnW, [espnw.com], is an emerging business that consists primarily of a digital product suite including pc web, mobile web and social media.  Founding partners include Nike, Gatorade and P&G (Venus and Secret). espnW is also supported by a strong social media presence on Twitter (@espnW) and Facebook. The Women’s Sports Foundation is the charity of choice of espnW.