Bassetti Claims Emphatic Victory in Winston-Salem

Photo Credit: Ethan Glading Photography

Memorial Day marked the sixth edition of what’s fast becoming an American Cycling tradition, the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic. The two day event features a downtown criterium on Saturday followed by the main event on Monday, the UCI 1.1 ranked Winston Salem Cycling Classic Road Race; 177.8km of racing over a 13.7km circuit amassing over 2100m of climbing in 13 laps around the city. Absent from the 2017 edition of the race, Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling made it a point to make an impression on the host city.

Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling came into the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic weekend fresh off a string of sprint victories in the Redlands Cycling Classic Criterium and the Dana Point Grand Prix, so the team was looking for a fast finish in Saturday’s USA Crits Criterium from sprinters Alfredo Rodriguez and Sam Bassetti. The criterium featured a figure 8 1.4km course with six turns and 24m of elevation per lap, most of which coming on the 4.3% “Hill of Doom.”

The criterium would ultimately come down to a fast sprint like predicted with Colin Joyce (Rally Cycling) taking the win, edging out Pier-Andre Cote (Silber) and Alfredo. The team worked great all night and gave Alfredo the opportunity to take another trip to the podium this season finishing the night in 3rd place, and giving the team motivation for Sunday’s finale.

With a difficult course and inclement weather on tap, the team turned their focus towards their biggest test of the season, 177km UCI 1.1 ranked Winston-Salem Cycling Classic Road Race. With rain compounding the already difficult day, the team knew making the break would be key to taking a victory home from North Carolina.

Photo Credit: Ethan Glading Photography

“We had a super good team effort overall,” said Sam Bassetti. “We had guys committed 2 hours into the race to riding themselves out of the race to set up the team for a mid race break.” Mid way through the event Kevin Girkins, Eder Frayre, and Bassetti found themselves up the road in a group that looked capable of staying away until the end.

On the final lap the group whittled its way down to 9 riders heading into the final climb with less than a minute on a chase group. It was clear no one wanted to come to the line for a sprint with Saturday’s criterium sprint winner, Joyce (Rally Cycling), in the group, so attacks came one right after the other.

At the base of the climb, the group fractured into 4 riders each attacking each other, with Sam finding the energy to follow and counter until he could finally break free. “I was in the front group all day,” Sam added, “in the end it came down to four of us at the top of the climb, and I was the one with the most jump left.”

The attacks first came from Rally, then counted by Holowesko, and Bassetti remained calm as he followed each attack. After a final surge from Hollowesko with a kilometer remaining, Sam dug deep, separating himself from the remaining three chasers. He put his head down and rode the final three turns solo. He gained enough distance on the chase for a long celebration across the finish line.

“I just had the legs at the end,” the race winner said grinning.

This victory caps a great block of racing for Bassetti, who won the Green Sprinters Jersey at the UCI Joe Martin Stage Race. He soon followed that victory up with a with a win at the Redlands Bicycle Classic Criterium, backed up with an impressive 3rd place on the Sunset Road Race the following day.

Photo Credit: Ethan Glading Photography

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School Visits at Redlands Bicycle Classic

The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling team had the opportunity to visit 3 area schools leading into the Redlands Bicycle Classic. These school visits are always a highlight for the riders, as they get to interact with many children who are eager to meet the pros. With athletes from four countries, the school kids were treated not only to information about safely riding their bicycles, but accents and stories of riding and racing in far off lands such as Australia, Mexico and Canada.

After safety demonstrations, talk about the Redlands Classic, and tips on being healthy student-athletes, the kids were able to ask questions. From wanting to know if the riders could take breaks, where their food came from, and how fast or far they had ridden, the students had excellent questions. However, the best question came from the last student, “but can you do anything cool?” he asked. Yes indeed they can! Alfredo Rodriguez then showcased his BMX background with a wheelie across the blacktop waiving to the students, followed by high-fives for everyone.

Arroyo Verde Middle School is located on the Highland Circuit Race course, which allowed the students to come out to cheer on their new favorite team during the stage 3 race. With handmade signs, dozens of cowbells and lots of cheering, their added support sure helped spur the team on that day as James Piccoli finished 3rd on the stage.

Thank you Redlands Bicycle Classic for helping organize school visits so that the Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team could interact with the community, talk about their passion for sport, safety and healthy living with over 600 school children prior to the event. We hope to see these young riders out at the races next year!

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Locking up your bike, you’re doing it wrong.

Locking up your bike is not as easy as you would think it can be. People make little mistakes while doing it every day, and some of those mistakes will cost you your bike. But don’t worry, the good people at Kryptonite Locks are here to help! They gave us 5 amazing tips to help keep your ride safe, if it be riding to the office, out mountain biking, running to the store, or just out for a cup of joe, these 5 tips will help keep your bike where it belongs.

5 Tips to Properly Locking Up Your Bike

1) Always Lock to a Solid Object that it Cannot be Lifted Over


It may seem obvious… but even a taller pole could allow a thief to push your locked bicycle up and over; successfully walking away with your bike.

2) Always Lock-Up in a Well Lit, High Foot Traffic Area

While it may seem counter-intuitive to lock your bike up in the open, hiding your locked bike away is a bad idea. It gives a potential thief who finds your bike, the opportunity to do their work hidden away.

The more visible your bike is to the public, the bolder the thief has to be.

3) Make Sure What You Lock To, Cannot be Cut

Always be sure that what you’re locking to, is as least as sturdy as the lock itself. A thief will always take the path of least resistance. If your bike is the target, and it is locked to something like a chain link fence, or a small tree, it’s much easier for them to cut the fence or the tree to steal your bike. Also be aware of poles that are not sufficiently mounted into the ground. A sturdy pole that can be easily pulled from the ground, is just as bad as an easy to cut object.

4) Lock According to Value

Lock what’s most valuable on a bike first. Typically, this means making sure the frame is secure, then the rear wheel, and finally, if possible, the front wheel as well.

Not all lock up situations are the same. Often, due to an odd or large object that you’re locking to, you’re unable to capture both the frame and rear tire. In this case, secure the frame.

In a perfect world, you would secure both the rear wheel and frame with a primary lock to a fixed object, and then using a secondary lock, secure the front wheel either to the fixed object or the bicycle frame.

5) Get the tightest fit possible!

Less room inside the lock, means less room for a thieves tools to fit in an attempt to leverage the lock off of the bicycle. Sometimes this may mean wrapping a chain around a frame an extra time even when you’re capturing the rear wheel and the frame.

To find one a Kryptonite lock, go to your local KHS dealer. Kryptonite has been one of our trusted partners for many years.

Monumental Success at Redlands Bicycle Classic

The 38th addition of the Redlands Bicycle Classic proved to be exciting from the beginning. The event was to begin with a 7.8 mile Individual Time Trial in Big Bear, CA. However, with a late spring storm descending on the mountain town Tuesday night, the stage was cancelled due to snow conditions.

Losing the first stage meant that the Yucaipa Road Race, Stage 2, would be a hotly contested challenging day as the general classification was yet to be set. With 95 miles of racing and over 9,000ft of climbing, the Queen Stage lived up to its expectations.

Within the first lap of 6 circuits, the group had already lost upwards of 30 riders. The pace continued as a team jokeyed for position in the KOM and Sprint Competitions. With a break of 4 up the road leading into the final climb up Oak Glen, the Elevate-KHS Team worked hard on the front to bring the time gap down. Ultimately the break was caught and climbers James Piccoli and Jordan Cheyne placed 10th and 13th respectively.

Stage 3 was hosted in the city of Highland, where the peloton raced a blistering 20 laps of the 2.8 mile Highland Circuit Race. Each lap found the riders charging up the steep Baseline climb where attrition and positioning became key. A solo rider was off the front as the laps wound down, putting the Elevate-KHS team in great position while the Axeon and United HealthCare teams worked hard to bring the race finale down to a sprint.

With the addition of Elevate-KHS at the front of the race, James Piccoli placed himself safely behind the team, and as the began the final assault up Baseline, Jordan Cheyne put in one final monster dig to drop James off for the sprint finish. Ultimately, James finished 3rd on the stage with a great team effort over the 58 mile event.

The Saturday Criterium is not only a fan-favorite event, but one that the team knew they could execute a great race. With temperatures over 95F, the team knew they had their work cut out for them during the 90 minute technical event.

A large crash occurred 30 minutes into the race, neutralizing the field and causing a restart of the stage. The team was down to 6 riders for the remaining 60 minutes of racing, and each athlete stepped up to the plate to make this stage one for the record books.

A small yet threatening break was up the road with 5 laps to go. The team amassed at the front, and led by Brian McCulloch, took over the lead out with 3 laps remaining. All hands were on deck as the team methodically picked up the pace, protected the sprinters and set Sam Bassetti up with half a lap to go to finish off the lead out. Sam attacked down the slight downhill leading into 3 turns to go and never looked back. With Scott Law safely tucked on his wheel, the two exited the final turn to the finish line in 1st and 2nd position which they held over the line.

Stage 5 is one of the most iconic stages in America. The Sunset Road Race take the peloton up into the hills of Redlands where they complete 12 technical circuits with ample climbing before descending back down into Redlands for 5 finishing circuits on the criterium course.

Going into the stage, James Piccoli was placed 6th overall and the team had aspirations of another podium finish on the day. With Nick Torraca, Sam Bassetti, Jordan Cheyne and James all in the front group, the team was able to place 1-2 riders in each threatening move as the laps wound down.

Ultimately, a solo rider from Holowesko Citadel – Brendan Rhim – got away solo to win the stage. It was apparent that what remained of the field would come down to a final sprint to end the day. With Sam Bassetti in the group, Piccoli and Cheyne worked diligently to position him for the final sprint.

With a bike throw at the finish, Sam placed 3rd on the day, capping off what is the teams most successful PRT campaign to date.

All photos credit:

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