Cycling Canada has announce the addition of four world-class coaches to its National Team staff as the organization ramps up its investment and commitment to developing Canadian technical leadership and coaching expertise. No strangers to international competition, Catharine Pendrel, Laura Brown, Richard Wooles and Tanya Dubnicoff will bring a wealth of experience to their new roles.
Catharine Pendrel recently retired from a prolific mountain bike career which included world titles in 2011 and 2014; winning the 2010, 2012 and 2016 World Cup series; bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games; and gold medals at the 2007 Pan American Games and 2014 Commonwealth Games. Pendrel will build on her years of experience in her new role of National Team Coach, working with endurance athletes. She also recently enrolled in the Commonwealth Women Coach Internship Program and will be at the Birmingham Games this summer alongside Team Canada athletes.
Laura Brown was a member of both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic teams and won a bronze in the Team Pursuit at the 2016 Olympic Games as well as gold medals at both the 2011 and 2015 Pan American Games. Brown has spent the past several years in a part-time assistant coach role with the National Team, as well as working with Cycling BC and several road trade teams. Brown will join Cycling Canada in a full-time role as a National Team Coach based in Vancouver, working with endurance athletes.
Richard Wooles is one of Canada’s most experienced and accomplished cycling coaches. His career has included leadership roles with British Cycling, the UCI World Cycling Centre, Cycling Canada and Cycling BC. Wooles spent the past year working with Cycling Canada in a part-time capacity and played a key role in leading last summer’s Junior and U23 road programming in Europe. Wooles will officially join Cycling Canada as a full-time National Team Coach based in Vancouver and will be working with endurance athletes.
Tanya Dubnicoff will be returning to Cycling Canada in the newly created role of Advancement Camp Coach. The Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame inductee’s sprint career includes three Olympics as an athlete, a world title in 1993, four Pan American Games gold medals, and coaching the 2012 Olympic Team Pursuit squad to a bronze medal. Dubnicoff will be responsible for leading Cycling Canada’s Advancement Camp initiatives, contributing to coaching and athlete education programs, and leading talent identification efforts across the country, including through RBC Training Ground.
Led by Head Coach Dan Proulx, Cycling Canada’s National Team coaches will work together to provide a sustainable performance program across all cycling disciplines that can deliver champions to the world stage and lifelong ambassadors to the Canadian cycling community. Based primarily out of regional training centres and hubs across the country, the coaching team works collaboratively to cultivate aligned and integrated multi-discipline development and performance programming.
“The cohort of National Team coaches we have assembled is truly exceptional,” Proulx said. “When you bring good people together like this, it creates an x-factor that raises the bar for everyone. The aim is to continue developing great riders who compete alongside the best on the world stage. At the same time, we want to improve the athlete experience, empowering them to achieve success on the bike and beyond. The coaches we’ve brought together have a track record of bringing out the best in others and this will certainly help the entire system to improve.”
In addition to providing technical and tactical expertise within their respective focus areas, National Teach Coaches help lead, mentor and empower Canada’s network of provincial, club and affiliate coaches to build a robust athlete pipeline and provide racing and skill development opportunities for athletes while increasing coaching knowledge, expertise and capacity across the country.
“One of our goals is to increase the knowledge, expertise and capacity amongst coaches in the Canadian system,” Cycling Canada’s Chief Sport Officer, Scott Kelly said. “It’s important that we continue to invest in and develop Canadian coaches. These additions to our team reflect a commitment on the part of Cycling Canada to do just that.”
Pendrel, Brown and Wooles have already begun their roles with Cycling Canada, while Dubnicoff will start on January 1st and will be based out of Calgary, Alberta.