Tour of Utah Invitation

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team is excited to announce their invitation to race the 2017 Tour of Utah! The event spans 7 days July 31st – August 6th, covering much of the vast state of Utah. To learn more about the stages that the riders will face, follow the link to Event Routes. The invitation to this prestigious event is very exciting for our athletes, organization and sponsors. As the event draws near, we will inform our fans and partners of the best avenues to follow the race from home so that you can be part of the live action as well.

The team will be taking an 8 man roster to the event, riders of which will be announced closer to the event. Thank you to all of our supporters and partners for helping this goal come to fruition!

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team 2017 Partners: 

Follow Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling On Our Social Media!

Web: www.elevate-khsprocycling.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elevatekhscycling/

Instagram: @elevatekhsprocycling

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Elevate-KHS Wins Four in a row in Texas!

Photo Credit: Heath Blackgrove

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team had a phenomenal weekend of racing in Texas. Having the chance to connect with partners and club members in the Lone Star State provided a great opportunity for the team to experience some great racing. The weekend began Friday night at the Bike The Bricks Criterium boasting a 11K prize purse which drew a substantial field. The race was on a course that wound through McKinney, TX under the stars and street lights sure made for exciting racing.

Alfredo Rodriguez found himself in the 3-man breakaway of the day and was able to confidently win the final sprint for the win.

Photo Credit: Lee McDaniel

On Saturday, the team raced the Saturday Night Fever Criterium where again they got to enjoy racing at night in a strong field that was animated from the start. In the end, Alfredo Rodriguez won the field sprint and Cory Williams finished 2nd on the day for the 1-2 kick!

Photo Credit: Lee McDaniel

On Sunday, the races moved to Greenville where the team took part in the Texas State Criterium Championship event. This 60 minute criterium was hostly contested and an exciting day for local and Texas native Nick Torraca. Racing at home is always exciting, especially when it is a championship event.

Photo Credit: Brooks Bixler

Despite rain and thunder delays, the team was able to stay dry and focused for when the race began. As the laps wound down it was clear it would be another sprint finish to the line, where Alfredo was again able to out kick the competition and Cory Williams finished 3rd.

Photo Credit: Heath Blackgrove

The team completed their Texas campaign racing on Memorial Day for the final Texas State Criterium Championship event. The course had 10 turns in just over 1K which created a fast and hectic race environment. In the end, the hard work of the team prevailed as Alfredo sealed the deal for the 4th and final win of the weekend and Eder Frayre sprinted to an impressive 3rd place.









Thank you to our hosts and partners in Texas for the great hospitality, top level racing and exciting environment to be in. We will be back! But for now, we are on our way to Oklahoma City for the Oklahoma City Pro Am Classic June 2nd-4th!

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team 2017 Partners: 

Follow Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling On Our Social Media!

Web: www.elevate-khsprocycling.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elevatekhscycling/

Instagram: @elevatekhsprocycling

#elevatekhs

 

 

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Wins for Zavyalov & Williams

California/Nevada State Time Trial Championships

Time Trial specialist Innokenty Zavyalov won the California Nevada State Time Trial Championship this past weekend in Lake Los Angeles, CA. After his blistering fast win on the 40K course, Inno talked about his success on the day:

“Early in the morning in a small desert town just north of LA, you can see riders warming up for the SCNCA State Championship Time Trial. It’s the dedicated time trialists who show up for this race, and it tends to bring together good competition. During the year there are a few chances to do a flat and long time trial like this.  I was really excited to have an opportunity to practice my craft while working on timing, pacing, pre-race routine, and test myself against some good competition. That morning there was no wind at all, which actually makes it a more challenging ride. In the years past we had a tailwind up the two slight uphills on this course. This race did not allow me to take any breaks or rest, so it was very important for me to stay within myself and not blow up. The battle was finding the golden middle between going in the red, and not pushing hard enough. It was great standing on the top step of the podium, and it gives me confidence and motivation in the face of the Pro level time trials coming up this season.”

Photo Credit: Jeffrey Bowens

Ontario Grand Prix

The following day, Cory Williams won the Ontario Grand Prix in Style, marking the 17th win of the season for the team. Cory recounted the hot and intense race:

“Cory Lockwood and I raced the mid season Ontario Criterium on Sunday. It was a super hot day and we knew that the break would go early. Our plan was to make the early break and go from there. When the race started, the first attack went on the second lap and I followed. We quickly opened a gap and before I knew it, we had day light between us and the field. The move consisted of five guys and I wasn’t happy because we had an hour to go and it was 100 degrees. I hoped more guys would come across and before I knew it, Lockwood had made his way across with two more guys.

We started pushing the break and guys started sitting-on and letting the wheel go. Eventually, they let Lockwood off the front solo and he gained forty seconds. The rest of the break got caught by the peloton while Lockwood was still up the road, and I had a feeling the counter move would stick. I followed a few moves and nothing was sticking, so I waited for a group to gain a little time and jumped across to it. This time, the break had ten of the strongest guys in it and everyone was cooperating. They brought Lockwood back with about twenty minutes left in the race, and I knew the effort he had just put in so I controlled the break for a bit so he could recover a bit. With five laps to go everyone, started attacking the break and I had to be smart about what I followed. A couple moves went and with two laps to go, three guys went up the road and another was going across to them. I didn’t want to risk four guys up the road, so I followed and as soon as I caught them, I attack going for the solo win. Everyone was tired from chasing Lockwood all day so it created the perfect opportunity to attack and go solo for a lap. We won the race by isolating the good guys from their teams and sticking to our plan!”

Watch the post-race interview with both racers to hear how the race transpiredOntario Grand Prix May 20th Win – Cory Williams

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team 2017 Partners: 

Follow Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling On Our Social Media!

Web: www.elevate-khsprocycling.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elevatekhscycling/

Instagram: @elevatekhsprocycling

#elevatekhs

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Colorado Classic Invitation

Photo Credit: Colorado Classic

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team is excited to announce that we have been invited to take part in the Colorado Classic August 10-13, 2017. The event is an 2.HC four day UCI stage race where stages will traverse Colorado Springs, Breckenridge and Denver.

Initial Press Release

Follow Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling On Our Social Media for updates leading into the event!

Web: www.elevate-khsprocycling.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elevatekhscycling/

Instagram: @elevatekhsprocycling

#elevatekhs

Having the opportunity to participate in this event is something the program has strived for and we would not be here without the belief and ongoing support from our partners:

 

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Mountain Bike Season Update #5 | The Grand Junction Off Road

Leaving Prescott I stopped for a few days in Sedona then traveled on to Moab before landing in Grand Junction of a solid week of course previews. I then detoured through Durango to Cortez, CO for a weekend of racing 12 hours of Mesa Verde with two other ladies as teammates. After a successful campaign on the women’s 3-4 person open category and a well received break from smashy Grand Junction trail escapades I headed back through Moab to Junction to settle in for the big weekend.  

Often when I get through with cyclocross for the winter I excitedly hop on to my mountain bike just to find that much of my fluidity and effortlessness on the trails has been replaced with a hesitant, halting, and highly frustrating change in riding style. I attribute this yearly transition to the consequence of riding my cross bike on the trail, an activity I dearly love but one that also causes me to keep a sharp eye out for rocks that will flat the narrower tires or obstacles that might not be the best location to find yourself at speed on the rigid cross bike.  After a few rides of realizing that the fatter tires and suspension soak up the trail with ease, I relax, my eyes break their grip on the path immediately in front of me, and my ability to flow through the ride returns. 

The Grand Junction Off Road combines more technical trail features such as step-ups, drops, and complex rocky plunges with the need for rallying flowy cornering, maintaining good nutrition and hydration, a solid base of endurance, and certainly the mental capacity for perseverance. Basically, if you wanted to earn your badge for being a mountain biker in the most complete sense, this is the way to do it. 

One of the most fascinating things I took away from year two of this race was that I basically went through the same pattern as the first year. I registered online after experiencing the Whiskey Off Road and loving the vibe that the race brought back to mountain biking.  After a few disappointing years of multiple laps through two mile loops and miniscule showings on the start lines the Epic Rides race series was like a trip back in time to when mountain biking was popular.  After registering, I ventured out to the race course to get a few laps on it and promptly decided I made a huge mistake signing up for a course I had never seen. 

The first section of trail included a number of steep pitches culminating in a massive hike-a-bike that was barely walkable much less ridable.  This led to a number of technical features I spent as much time staring at as I did riding. Heading out to the back part of the loop the technical features continued but was now coupled with the feeling of being pretty far out from civilization.  After the extended fire road climb that is the central feature of the loop, you get to thank your legs by hovering over the saddle for another few miles of punchy and intense fire road descending.  And if by thanking them you forgot to take every opportunity to spin them out, you are rewarded with the final four miles of climbing at 11-18% grade on a solid piece of slickrock. The last section of trail typically (it has changed) heads back into the area popular amongst the locals for short loops, big suspension, and max fun and for the second year (on different trail) at least one feature I was none too excited about riding. 

The first ride led to a sense of panic.  “I can’t hardly ride this, how am I going to race??” The second pre-ride look allowed me to identify lines through the rock with minimal hesitancy and while finding all of them while being in a hurry wasn’t seeming likely, it was reliving to know that it was possible.  My third ride allotted me the ability to ride through without stopping and not just was my competency higher I was actually finding fun with my new found confidence as well as reassurance at the efficiency of my reduced time out on the course.

By race day I was locked and loaded and actually EXCITED to get out there and put all that practice to use.  The race was no doubt hard but with higher consequences of being out on real technical trails you are forced to bring a higher level of focus which in turn lets me have a better race. 

Fast forward to the current year…. I register, get out to pre-ride fully expecting that I had ridden the course before so it would be a walk in the park and BAM, I’m in the exact same boat as the first year.  Knowing what I had gone through and that it ended positively let me maintain a degree of sanity but regardless, it was the same cup of tea.  My saving grace came in the form of leaving to ride trails that I love for a different race, flowy, fast, and fun.  While doing laps at Phil’s World in Cortez for 12 Hours of Mesa Verde I was reminded that I was indeed a good bike handler and likely I was being hard on myself.  When I returned to Grand Junction the following week the rain, snow, and bentonite clay kept me off the course save one quick reminder run through the day before the race.  I know I am capable of riding that one big plunge but I wasn’t feeling it.  Questioning my abilities on something like this during the race will lead me to slow my pace and sometimes it’s just as good (and quick) to plan on running. 

I rode to my ability in the first portion of the race, I went in feeling almost cocky over my competence.  While it sounds a touch narcissistic, this feeling usually leads to a better performance for me and indeed I was clearing all the technical bits where others around me weren’t.  After doing so well on the first portion I started thinking too much about it as opposed to taking my brain out of the equation and started to lose some ground.  I felt good the whole day, never quite in the red but therein lies my performance limiter with mountain bike racing: I never quite know when to go harder.  The brain has a regulator that naturally tells you to not push too hard (for survival purposes) and I find mountain bike racing to be quite the test of ignoring this. 

Finishing 15th with some of the best ladies in the world isn’t nearly as meaningful to me as the accomplishment of having ridden the course faster from the year prior.  I rode my race plan to a T and had fantastic support throughout.  My biggest takeaway at the conclusion of the event was not about my performance, it was about my perspective.  I look at an obstacle, be it the course in its entirety, an intimidating rock drop, or a longer climb, and I think if it in terms of what I need to do to get through it.  I think about the preparation, the anticipation, the feelings, the effort dedicated and the time spent, the relief when I’m beyond it.  Through that thinking the obstacle grows and I allot more time to its accomplishment… which is not productive in racing.  But what if instead of thinking of that obstacle as something I need to arrive at to overcome, I give it less significance in my head? I can choose to do this by looking at the bigger picture, each obstacle is just one blip on the radar and one way or another I will surpass it.  Armed with this knowledge (and some practice!) I can choose to minimize its significance which will in turn allow me to push harder and ride faster.  Racing is all about testing your limits and expanding your boundaries, even the ones you never knew were there. 

While I have my fair share of relief at heading back out of town towards trails that flow fast and smooth, it’s not without an appreciation for switching it up, getting out of my comfort zone, pushing my limits, testing my skills, and learning that perseverance is the most cherished reward.  

Mid-Season Interview: Brian McCulloch

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team is at the half way point of the season with 15 race wins and 30 podiums. With a short racing break to focus on training for the upcoming block of racing, we took some time to connect with team veteran Brian McCulloch to hear how his season is going.

Elevate-KHS: Brian, this is your 6th season with program, but your first time racing at the UCI level, and racing internationally. What was your take away from the UCI 2.1 Tour of Taiwan?

Brian McCulloch: Besides the fast and aggressive racing, which I enjoyed immensely, what was most memorable to me at the Tour of Taiwan was the logistical support required to race literally across the entire country. KHS, Maxxis, Velo Saddles, Xpedo and FSA were integral to our success getting through the stages each day. Between their local knowledge of the routes and road conditions, as well as the fan support that came along with 4 major Taiwanese brands was incredible. I began the week knowing zero Taiwanese and intrigued about the culture, and completed the race knowing a handful of words and many new friends in a foreign country.

Elevate-KHS: The Tour of the Gila originally was not on your racing schedule. However, you received the call the week prior that you would be racing the challenging event at altitude. How was your experience in New Mexico?

BMc: This was my first year racing at the Tour of the Gila and I had always heard how challenging the altitude and the event was. Getting the call to race with our team and help Alfredo Rodriguez finish 3rd in the criterium, our teams first UCI podium, was a great experience. We were fortune to have wonderful host accommodations in the little town of Silver City that kept us comfortable between the grueling stages. As always, having great staff support at a race of this caliber is essential and the group we had at Gila made a huge difference. The little things such as post-race meals, massage, and freshly cleaned bikes go a long way to help us stay focused on performing our best.

Silver City, NM – April 22: Stage 4 of the Tour of the Gila on April 22, 2017 in Silver City, New Mexico. (Photo by Jonathan Devich/Epic Images)

Elevate-KHS: The final event of the racing block was the Redlands Bicycle Classic. This was your 8th time lining up at your hometown race. Does it get any easier?

BMc: NO! And the race organizers wouldn’t have it any other way. Nor would I. This year the race reshuffled the stage order and added extensive climbing for a mountain top finish on the iconic Oak Glen. Along with soaring temperatures at the start and hail by the end, this addition of the Redlands Bicycle Classic was very challenging.

Elevate-KHS: You are about to embark on a 6 week road trip across the country racing with the team. What are you looking forward to the most?

BMc: Racing! Racing is what I am looking forward to. Each race day in the upcoming block of travel offers an opportunity for the team and me to earn results, race hard, and put on a great show for the fans. Many of the upcoming races will be Livestreamed so we hope you can follow along from home or come out and watch us at the races. Check our social media for links and information as the events get closer.

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team 2017 Partners: 

Follow Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling On Our Social Media!

Web: www.elevate-khsprocycling.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/elevatekhscycling/

Instagram: @elevatekhsprocycling

#elevatekhs

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