The Killington Mountain School Cycling team has spent the past few weeks competing across the Northeast in a variety of Cyclocross and Mountain Bike races, taking multiple wins and having a lot of fun (and getting a little bit muddy!) along the way. Coach Brad Ramsay shared a recap of their recent events.
Uncle Sam Grand Prix of Cyclocross: Two weeks ago, the team headed to Troy, NY, where most of the athletes doubled up and raced both events for which they were eligible. Maddy Smith was the NY State Champion in the U-17 category, and finished top 20 among the Cat ¾ women. Aliza Tobias continued her upward trend, finishing second in the U-19 and was also top 20 among Cat ¾ women. Turner Ramsay made it a perfect day, winning among the U-19 women, and then taking the top spot on the Elite Women’s podium as well!
In the Men's race, Tyler Clark, Vivien Rindisbacher, and Leo Kirkpatrick-Baird went 1,2,3, sweeping the podium the Junior Boys' race! Not to be outdone by Turner, Tyler then went on to win the Elite Men's race later in the day! He was followed by Vivien in fifth, and Johannes Stromski in the top 20. Johannes also rode to a strong fifth place finish in the Men’s 3 race. As a special surprise, KMS Alpine Coach Jack Bailey made an appearance and showed the kids how it is done, taking fifth in the Men's Cat 5 race, in what was his first crack at cyclocross! It was a good day all-around for KMS!
Gloucester Grand Prix of Cyclocross: This iconic race, overlooking Gloucester Harbor, in Massachusetts once again lived up to its awesome reputation. With a combination of off-camber turns, obstacles strategically placed in difficult locations, power sections, sand, and the demanding uphill finish stretch, the course was a legitimate test of skills and fitness. Aliza led off both days in the Cat 3-4 Women’s races, and continued to impress with her determination and rapid acquisition of cyclocross skills (a discipline new to her this fall). She finished 22 and 23 respectively on Saturday and Sunday (top 1/3 both days!). Following Aliza’s progress has been truly inspiring.
Moving on to the Elite Junior Boys (starting with and racing among the crazy-strong 35+ Masters field), Vivien raced hard and made the top 20 on Saturday, but was afflicted with a mechanical early in the race Sunday and spent the race fighting his way back to the front. Tyler continued his run of excellent results, and showed his technical prowess as he smoothed through the courses; racing to the second step on the podium both Saturday and Sunday, which made him the series leader and allowed him to don the series Leader Jersey! In the Cat 3 Men’s races, Johannes was steady and consistently smooth as he raced to sixth place Saturday, and 17th on Sunday. Last but not least, Turner, racing with the Elite UCI Women, continued to prove that she has earned the right to ride with the elite pro women – finishing 22 Saturday and moving up to 18th on Sunday!
It's always nice to have a chance to catch up with KMS Cycling alum Noah Barrow ('16), who rode down with UVM friends to race with the Elite Men. It was an epic weekend of racing in beautiful sunny weather!
On Wednesday, the team went down to Vermont Academy for a prep-school mountain bike race. The VA course is ALWAYS epic; if you want to win at VA, you better bring your tech skills! Tyler and Turner continued their season-long domination of the Mens and Women's fields, and Josh Chu is always in contention as well! Johannes finished behind Josh, while Aliza and Vivien both suffered mechanical issues.
This past weekend, with the school closed, the team split up and went in different directions. Leo raced at Marty Cross down in New Jersey, landing second on the podium among Junior Boys, and third on the Men’s Cat 4 podium! Aliza, Josh Chu, and Turner raced in Hanover, NH. The wet, slippery conditions led to unfortunate race-ending crashes for Aliza and Josh, but Turner had better luck, riding to a third place finish among the Pro/1/2/3 women. Vivien and Johannes raced down in Massachusetts, with Johannes riding to a top 15 finish among the Elite Men, while Vivien succumbed to race-ending technical issues. Last, Tyler Clark went up to Canada (his home country) to race among peers that he and Vivien will be taking on two weeks from now at Canadian Junior Cyclocross National Championships. He finished fifth among Elite men, posting split times rivaling the leaders in many of the laps. The team had lots of great results spread out across the northeast!
Though KMS didn’t race because school was closed and and we'd had some racing earlier in the day, we want to send out a big thank you to Proctor Academy for doing an awesome job putting together an epic mountain bike race Saturday on short notice and in the middle of a MONSOON! Also a HUGE thanks to American Flatbread for donating lots of awesome pizza to warm up and refuel all the students who refused to be sidelined by the weather!
Next up the cyclists head to Cincinnati, Ohio for the Pan-Am Cyclocross Championship before the KMS Canadian citizens head to Sherburne, Quebec for their National Championships, while the rest of the squad heads to Louisville, KY for a classic UCI race weekend.