After a week of recovery from the regular season and catching up on studies and preparation for final exams, the MHC cycling team is ramping it up for our trip to nationals in Madison, WI, on May 7-9. The team raced at Wednesday’s Ring of Fire training race and a few will partake in races this weekend at USA Crits Speedweek. Plus, they’ve been spending plenty of time in the aero bars preparing for the Team Time Trial event on the last day of nationals. Unfortunately, MHC’s graduation takes place on the same weekend as nationals, so we will be without one rider, Melissa Holloway, for the Road Race and Criterium. But after Melissa walks next Saturday, we are putting her on a plane so she can race in the Team Time Trial on Sunday. As you can tell from the photo, Melissa is excited to end her career at MHC on a high note.
The team will leave next Wednesday to arrive in time for Thursday evening’s important rider and team meeting and to pick up rider packages. Then the men will kick off the racing on Friday morning at 8:30am for a 72-mile road race that includes over 8,000ft of climbing, a course ideally suited to Matt Willing, where he will have the support of the rest of the team, including Francisco Fuster who is coming into good form and the ever-ready Paul Webb. Then the women will race one lap less on the same course for a total of 58 miles at about 1pm. On Saturday, the racing moves to a flat, fast , four corner criterium course of about 1km. The women will race for 45 minutes starting at 3pm and all around strong woman Klara Rossouw and sprinter Yolanda Colon have a great shot at this event, and then the men will race for 60 minutes starting at 5pm, and MHC will look to set up Paul Webb and Kyle Knott for breakaways and/or a field sprint. Nikola Milanovic will also be in the mix, looking to help the team improve on his strong 15th place at last year’s nationals criterium championship. On Sunday, MHC will field teams for the final event, the Team Time Trial. Then we will start the long drive back home, hopefully with some additional hardward, and perhaps even with a stars and stripes jersey or two. You never know: it’s bike racing, and nearly anything can happen, but we’ve got the talent and momentum to put MHC on the podium.
Stay tuned for updates during nationals, which will be posted on our Facebook page.