b. Nov. 22, 1955, Flint, MI
Nicknamed "Navajo Sue" because of her long ponytail, Novara originally planned to be a speed skater, but she switched to cycling when she was thirteen.
In 1975, Novara became the youngest cyclist ever to win the world sprint cycling championship. She had placed second in a photo-finish the year before. She was also second three years in a row, from 1976 through 1978, and she won the championship again in 1980.
Novara had a series of exciting duels with Sheila Young in the national match sprint championships. She finished second to Young in 1971, beat her in 1972, finished second to her in 1973, beat her in 1974 and 1975, and finished second to her once more in 1976. Novara then won the championship four years in a row, from 1977 through 1980.
When women's cycling was added to the Olympic program for the 1984 games, the only event was the road race. Hoping for a medal, Novara switched from track racing to road racing in 1982 and won the national championship. However, she failed to medal in the Olympics.
In her last race, Novara won the 1984 Central Park Grand Prix in New York City. She then retired from competition. In March of 1986, the U. S. Cycling Federation hired her to coach the U. S. women's team preparing for the 1987 world championships. Under Novara's direction, the team won four medals, including a gold.