One Woman's Journey from Newbie Zwift Rider to Gravel Pro in Two Years

Meet Big Sugar winner Paige Onweller, who'll be trading the E.R. for full-time gravel racing in 2023

Paige Onweller
(Image credit: Paige Onweller)

On October 22, 2022, Paige Onweller won the 104.2-mile Big Sugar Gravel Pro Women's title, the final race in the LifeTime Grand Prix six-race series. The rising star's first professional victory over the series winner Haley Smith and runner-up Sofia Gomez Villafane moved her to ninth in the final overall standings and ensured a $7,000 payout. 

The Michigan native's breakthrough win is one of a list of impressive 2022 results, including the win at Barry Roubaix, second at (the unofficial) Gravel Worlds, fourth at LeadBoat, and top-10 placings at Leadville and Chequamegon. Onweller's ascension up the off-road ranks, at first glance, may look like that of any other rising superstar until you consider this. 

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Christopher Schwenker

A physical therapist with over 25 years of experience, Christopher Schwenker is on a journey to give back to the cycling community for rewarding experiences and fulfilling relationships through the pages of his virtual cycling blog, The Zommunique, and his cycling-related non-profit, The DIRT Dad Fund