2024 Carole King Award Presentation

Sara Poidevin (center), Marc Shaw, RBC Executive Director (Left of Sara), Brian King (Carole King’s Son), and DNA Cycling
Photo: Kris Stewart


REDLANDS, CA. – When she astounded road racing fans by winning the mountain stage of the 2017 Colorado Classic in Breckenridge by a full two minutes, a report in the Denver Post hailed Sara Poidevin, then 21 years old, as part of a wave of new, up-and-coming cyclists on the professional tour.

Race fans attending the 2016 Redlands Bicycle Classic had already seen her in action as she won the mountain stage of the event that year and wound up eighth overall in 9:08.43.

Poidevin was part of the DNA Pro Cycling team for this year’s 38th renewal of the event and made her mark, finishing eighth in the grueling 40-mile point-to-point race from Redlands to Onyx Summit at 8,400 feet above sea level on April 11 and 19th at the 41.3-mile City of Highland circuit race.

But, it’s her presence on and off the bicycle, her support of teammates as well as her leadership that led the Classic organizing committee to award her the Carole King Memorial Award for sportsmanship in cycling and athletic competition.

The award honors the memory of King, a founding member of the all-volunteer Classic organizing committee in 1985 whose spirit of volunteering and community involvement were her strengths.

Committee spokesman Scott Welsh said Poidevin’s teammates advised him that Poidevin’s amazing presence, team leadership and encouragement of other riders embodied the value of giving to others first before self.

Poidevin, now 27 years old, honed her riding skills on mountain bikes as a young teenager growing up in Canmore, Alberta, Canada.

In an interview with Human Powered Health Cycling in 2020, Poidevin told the interviewer, “My focus was on mountain biking at first,” recalling how she purchased a road bike to use for training during the winters in Canmore.

“I quickly discovered that I was better, faster on the road,” she said.

She began road racing with the Calgary Cycling Club through 2015, then turned pro and joined the Rally Team in 2016 and competed with them through 2021 before joining EF Education-TIBCO-SVB for the 2022 and 2023 racing seasons.

With regard to the rigors of road racing, she said of her experiences, “Sometimes there can be really high highs and then really low lows, but the people around you make a difference as you progress in the long term,” she said in 2020.

Her reserved personality on the bicycle is only one side of her, teammates said.

“She definitely has the attitude which makes her such a great bike rider,” one of her teammates said at the 2017 Colorado Classic. “Pretty much like ‘what’s the big deal? Toughen up and let’s go.’ She’s one tough cookie.”

Physically, Poidevin’s Moonstone climb near Breckenridge and the Onyx Summit climb on April 11 near Redlands seem to be what one observer called a result of “her form and physiology a perfect fit for her with her climber’s power-to-weight ratio.”

Other top finishes in her pro career include a third-place finish at the Canadian National Championship in 2021, winning the first stage of the Tour Feminin International des Pyrenees in 2022, second-place finish at the 2018 Tour of the Gila and seventh in the Tour of California that same year.

Previous winners of the Carole King Memorial Award include men’s cyclist Chris Horner and women’s cyclist Amber Neben (twice). Horner also received the Classic’s Legends Award in 2018 while Neben was a Legends Award recipient in 2019.