A few cool things this month worth pointing out from the top:
1. We're giving away a ton of Gatorade products (literally, almost a ton) to the first Collegiate club to surpass its 2009 membership by 15. Scroll on down to Team News for more info.
2. USA Cycling is looking for Media Representatives for each conference. This is an awesome opportunity to earn some résumé cred. Check it out in Conference News.
3. If you've ever wondered what happens to your $30 when you send it in to USA Cycling, we've got the answer for you in The Explainer.
Let me know if you have any questions. And good luck this season!
-Jeffrey Hansen, USA Cycling Collegiate Program Manager
2010 Collegiate Membership Contest
Would you like Gatorade to fully sponsor your team with products for a year? We'll make it easy: sign up 15 new members. It's as simple as that. The first Collegiate Club to surpass their 2009 membership by 15 members will win 160 gallons-worth of Gatorade drink mix, 350 bottles-worth of Endurance Formula, and 300 energy bars. Yes, that is a lot.
So how do you know whether you're on track to win or not? First, check out this chart to see where you are, and then keep an eye on your membership on your club's Details page at usacycling.org. When you've surpassed your 2009 number by 15, send an e-mail to Jeffrey Hansen. Voila! More Gatorade than you can shake a stick at.
This contest does not extend to new clubs. But have no fear! We have another contest in the works for the Biggest New Collegiate Club for 2010. More details will follow as the year progresses (we won't know a winner until the end of the year). We will also have a contest for the Club with the Most Growth in 2010. Again, details will follow.
Now go recruit!
Is Your Club on This Map? It Should Be!
As of February 18, only the clubs on this map have renewed their club licenses. That means that if your club isn't on this map, you can't race! With the road season already underway in the south and about to begin up north, you're running out of time to renew!
Please note: the map is accurate as of February 2, 2010, and some clubs may have renewed since that date.
Team Tip: Does Your Club Have an E-mail Address?
A consistent difficulty for collegiate teams is, well, a lack of consistency. Presidents graduate, and with them goes all they've learned in their tenures as team leaders. While this problem will never fully go away, USA Cycling Collegiate is working to provide resources and materials to both facilitate the sharing of leadership knowledge, and directly instruct on how to best lead and manage a team. In the meantime, however (assembling resources such as these is a big task), one simple solution to a continuous problem is to set up a Team E-Mail Address. Go to gmail.com and quickly set up an account: XSUcycling@gmail.com, for example. Simply make sure that the login information is easy to remember and gets handed down with the presidency each year. Then as team leadership changes, the contact information on your website and with USA Cycling doesn't have to. And this way, team presidents that have graduated won't be forever followed by e-mail inquiries about their college cycling teams.
This is a space to learn from each other and get a peek into the operations of teams you might not otherwise encounter. So start sharing. Submit stories to email@example.com.
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Want to be a Conference Media Representative?
For the 2010 Road season, USA Cycling Collegiate will be trying out a new program for volunteers with an interest in journalism, publicity, communications, or PR. Here’s what we’re looking for:
-Excellent writing skills
-Ability to work on a deadline
-High level of organization
-Weekly race attendance
If you possess these qualities, you can be your conference’s Media Representative! It will look good on a résumé, you’ll learn a great deal, and your work will help increase the visibility of collegiate cycling, all with just a couple hours’ effort a week! Here are the tasks we’re asking you to perform each week:
Write a pre-event press release for each race and contact at least one media outlet to try and get it into the local news
Write a post-event press release for each race and try and get it into the local news, too.
Submit the post-event report to me for publication on usacycling.org
We’ve even created templates and guidelines for the press releases so you only have to fill in the blanks if you’re short on time. It’s as easy as it can be, but there is plenty of opportunity to go above and beyond, too. The most successful Conference Media Representatives (most articles placed, etc.) will receive some swag courtesy of USA Cycling. This may sound like slave labor but it is also an excellent opportunity to burnish some skills and your résumé. Basically you get to write a couple paragraphs about what you love to do every week!
Please send a paragraph explaining why you should be your conference’s M.R. as soon as possible to firstname.lastname@example.org. Think of it as a micro cover letter without the résumé. Positions have already been filled in the Eastern, Western, Southeast and Midwest conferences, so get your application in quickly!
Velonews.com Looking for C0llegiate Columnists
Velonews.com wants you! If you compete in the Inter-Mountain, North Central, or Northwest conferences, and would be interested in writing for velonews.com periodically, send an e-mail to Steve Frothingham email@example.com letting him know! Fame could be yours!
Conference Nationals Allocations
The 2010 USA Cycling Collegiate National Championship conference Allocations have been published! To find out how many spots are up for grabs at nationals, click here.
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2010 Collegiate Road Season Begins in Tucson
The 2010 USA Cycling Collegiate Road season kicked off last weekend in Tucson with the University of Arizona Criterium, the year’s first collegiate cycling race. The season will begin in earnest across the country in the weeks that follow, but this early season start was a great preview of the excitement to come. Chloe Forsman, the 2009 Women’s D1 Mountain Bike Cross Country and Short Track National Champion, and promoter of the Arizona race, reflected on the preparation for the start of the season, saying, “The event is entirely organized and run by students. This year, a six-person committee has handled the bulk of the groundwork, while about 30 club members volunteered at the event day-of. It's stressful but always a highlight of the year.” Things worked out well for the home team, as they won all but one category of racing.
As the weather warms across the country, the regular season of racing will begin in each of the 11 Collegiate Cycling Conferences across the country. Based on size, each conference is allocated a specific number of start spots at the USA Cycling Collegiate National Road Championships, which take place this year in Madison, Wisconsin, May 7-9. This narrows the competition to the best and fastest in collegiate cycling, which means that competition will be fierce throughout the regular spring season as teams compete for points. With over 70 events around the country leading right up to the rest week that precedes Collegiate Road National Championships, racers will have plenty of time to move up in the collegiate ranks and secure a start spot at Nationals.
Three of the four USA Cycling National Collegiate Championships, Track, Mountain Bike, and Cyclo-cross, were contested during the first half of this academic year. The only remaining championship is traditionally the largest and most contested: USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships. Up to 20 National Collegiate Ranking Points are available to each team at the final USA Cycling Collegiate National Championship of the academic year. Headed into the finale the standings remain tight, leaving the nation’s collegiate cycling powerhouses to fight tooth and nail for every point.
Division I National Collegiate Team Rankings
1 Fort Lewis College 58
2 Lees-McRae College 53
3 Lindsey Wilson College 49
4 Colorado State University 43
5 Marian University 36
See Full Rankings Here
Division II National Collegiate Team Rankings
1 Mesa State College 51
2 Massachusetts Institute of Technology 38
3 Appalachian State University 32
4 Western Washington University 30
5 Colby College 21
See Full Rankings Here
Photos courtesy Gordon Bates/Arizona Daily Wildcat
Would You Compete for a Yearlong Omnium?
What do you think of a yearlong individual omnium, drawing on the individual omniums from all 4 USA Cycling Collegiate National Championships? There are plenty of individuals that compete and do well at a few, and sometimes all, of the Nationals, and this recognition would honor their versatility. Speak your mind here.
Results of the Collegiate BMX Poll
Two months ago we asked your opinion on the idea of adding a Collegiate Category to USA Cycling BMX One-Day National Championships. The results were overwhelmingly positive, but participation was low. If you still have an opinion but haven't voiced it yet, click here and take the ONE QUESTION POLL. USA Cycling is currently investigating the possibility of adding a category at an unspecified future date.
Be Sure to Check out Collegiate Cycling in the News!
Click here for all the latest stories in the press about collegiate cycling.
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Where Does My $30 Go?
Every year you pay USA Cycling $30 for a collegiate cycling license ($60 if you purchase a Road or Mountain Bike license, as well), your club pays a $50 renewal fee, and you pay to promote a race through USA Cycling, as well. So where does this money go? What do we do with it? First and foremost, every USA Cycling staff member is issued a company Porsche and a Learjet on his or her first day.
Obviously this isn’t the case, but there are always running assumptions that USA Cycling is a for-profit company, when in fact, it is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, and it is an extremely efficient one. To be as transparent as possible, we have broken down exactly where your license money goes in the world of collegiate cycling. You can find a similar breakdown of other USA Cycling financials on the last page of our 2008 Annual Report (the 2009 Report will be released soon).
To find out exactly how Collegiate Cycling license fees are spent, read more here.
So What Is Mass-Start Legal and What Isn't?
Ever tried to read the UCI rulebook cover to cover? USAC Technical Director Shawn Farrell could recite it to you from memory, but that might take a while. So how does one figure out exactly what the new collegiate aero rule means for his or her equipment? Even the UCI "Practical Guide to Implementation" is a bit dense.
Fortunately for us, collegiate cyclist and official Raymond Junkins has compiled a handy guide to what's legal and what's not. Find it here. Thanks Ray!
For the most up-t0-date list of non-standard wheels that are approved for mass-start use, check here.
Submit any questions you have about collegiate cycling to firstname.lastname@example.org
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Portland State University
Essay by Elizabeth Sederbaum and Miles Crumley
The Portland State University (PSU) cycling club is entering its seventh year of competitive cycling. The club consists of riders of all levels, from beginner to pro, and disciplines including road, mountain, cyclo-cross and track. The team reflects the diversity of Portland State University; a large, urban university located in downtown Portland, Oregon with almost 30,000 students.
The PSU cycling club is comprised of a group of committed students who are looking to indulge their passion for competitive cycling while in college. Some of the club’s accomplishments include: sending Anita Dilles to collegiate track nationals in 2008; Amelia Bjesse-Puffin to collegiate track nationals in 2009, where she took home two medals. The cycling club has also sent riders to collegiate road and mountain bike national championships.
2009 marked the beginning of a new era in disabled sports for PSU. With the help of the Northwest Collegiate Cycling Conference (NWCCC) director, Bill WyKoff, the PSU Cycling Club created the first handcycling category in the NWCCC. PSU cycling club rider, Jeremy Robbins, was awarded a first place medal from USA Cycling in the newly developed category. This demonstrates that the PSU cycling club and the NWCCC are open to all interested riders who are willing to make a commitment to cycling and racing, and are glad to have the opportunity to inaugurate a new category for handcyclists.
One of PSU’s philosophies is “Let Knowledge Serve the City”. This statement encourages its alumni and students to give back to the community as much as possible. In 2009, the cycling club formed partnerships with multiple Portland businesses, organizations, and non-profits in an effort to represent this motto. One partnership the PSU cycling club is proud of working with is Bicycle Transportation Alliance, a local lobbying organization that works with government agencies to promote the number of cyclists on the road while keeping them safe. PSU cycling volunteers time with Friends of Trees, a neighborhood tree planting organization. Club members also volunteer at local bicycle races and large social rides in the city. Last spring the club was recognized by PSU for accumulating the most volunteer hours out of 30 other recreational clubs at the school. While volunteering is not mandatory, the members of the cycling club agreed to maintain this philosophy of service in the future.
The cycling club is excited for the upcoming race seasons and is making preparations to send more racers to the upcoming collegiate national championships. The PSU cycling club is proud to represent Portland State University and our committed sponsors: Revolver Bikes, Schwalbe, Clif Bar, Park Tool, Ironclad, and Fuji Bikes.
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Ian Sullivan, ECCC Assistant Director
How did you first get involved with cycling? I was raised in a pretty cycling-friendly family. Both of my parents ride in a recreational fashion every day during the summers. As a kid, bikes were just a part of our family activities. My dad got into mountain biking for a little while in the early 1990's so that was my first introduction to more Hard Core riding. My intense interest in cycling really got lit by attending a mountain bike camp at Catamount Family Center in Williston VT when I was 11 or so. That really got me interested in racing. To more directly answer your question, I can't remember a time before cycling.
What about collegiate cycling? During High school and the first 2 and 2/3 of college I was a really committed runner. Cycling was a recreational thing that I did in the summer. The Varsity Cross-Country and Track programs didn't really allow for a lot of cross training. Anyhow, the spring of my junior year I was wicked burned out on the running teams. I needed to get back to cycling. So I joined the UVM cycling team and did a few races.
How long have you been conference director? This year. Why did you get involved? As a sport cycling has given me a tremendous amount. I have personally had a ton of great experiences in the sport. I have always believed that anything worth participating in is worth contributing to. Being part of collegiate cycling was very worthwhile to me, so I felt as though I should give back to try to help prepetuate the high standards of quality that the ECCC has enjoyed throughout the years.
Describe a typical race weekend; what do you do? Well, I haven't done a road weekend yet. During the mountain season I just tried to help things go smoothly.
What are your goals for the conference? I really want to see women's racing continue to develop. Collegiate racing is unique because it marginalizes women's racing a lot less than the regular seasons. I think there is still a long way to go, but we are in the middle of some programs to try and make the ECCC (and hopefully the broader community) a better place for women's racing.
I also really want to see the mountain season continue to grow and innovate. There are very few series that are as cool as the collegiate one, I would love to see road season like attendance at mountain races. The events, as products, are getting to a really high quality and are a lot of fun, it is just a matter of time for the attendance to follow.
Intro/Skillz clinics. I think that Collegiate is awesome because it is provides a place where riders of immensely disparate skill levels care deeply about each other’s races. I want to see our ability to educate and guide new racers into the sport grow and evolve.
Do you ride very often? I try to. Race? You could call it that. It is really entertaining to watch. Every time I pin a number on I say a little prayer to avoid embarrassing myself.
Road or mountain? Both What kind of bike(s) do you have? I am going to be on a Trek Top Fuel 9.9
What’s your favorite part of the job? Being there when the spark is lit for somebody. Seeing somebody really want to make racing happen for themselves. It is such a rush. So much of our everyday lives is terribly mundane and devoid of passion. Racing is one of the few things that you don't have to temper your passion. You can unabashedly love racing and pursue it with your whole heart, and everybody knows where you are coming from. I get to see this working with the Intros and the Skillz Clinics. Least favorite? When I mess up. Lord knows it has happened and will happen again.
Why do you keep doing it? I haven't been doing it long enough to know. Should I be worried....?
What is special about collegiate cycling? I am not sure if many people have the same experience that a UVM cyclist would. A lot of the things that made collegiate special for me had to do with the team and shouldn’t get reprinted. I loved all of the stuff that happened outside of your own personal racing. The inter-team rivalries, the heckling, the trash talk, the pranks and above all the van trips. In the real world people aren't down with that. In Collegiate it is all about the glory and passion. I really dig that,
Do you have any good stories (funny, heartwarming, dramatic) from being a conference director? My absolute favorite moment so far was at this past mountain season's Easterns. The XC race was held in cold slow drizzle. Perfect New England Racing. My friend and victim of a horrible Car v. Bike collision, Rose Long, won the race. My little sister, Maggie Sullivan, got second and tied up the season omnium. In third place was my longtime girlfriend, Emily Gassman. I don't think I have ever been so happy, or felt so connected to a podium I wasn't on.
What is your paying job? I am the Camp Director of a Mountain Bike Camp. Check it out at www.Catamountoutdoor.com. We work with about 400 kids over the course of the summer and do a lot of work with skills and riding. This is my dream job for the moment, during the summer I get to spend all day everyday on my bike. The winter sees a lot more paperwork and planning. It is really good.
Tell me three things about yourself that don’t involve cycling.
1. Someday I want to be a Lawyer, and wear a suit and tie every day.
2. I love Nordic skiing. This is the second great athletic passion of mine.
3. I take notes, but don't reread them. If I write it down I will probably remember it. Besides, my handwriting is so bad I have a hard time reading it.
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The only remaining Collegiate Board member yet to be interviewed, Mark Abramson, is out of the country for a while, so for February we will re-run an interview from November with Andrew Armstrong. -JH
1How did you first get involved with cycling? I became involved I guess when riding my bike around the neighborhood as a kid and to/from elementary and middle school. I first became involved in organized cycling as a freshman in college when I saw the club at Boston College’s student activities fair in the campus green. A few months later, with the help of a senior I didn’t know, I bought a bike and a couple months later after only riding it a few times I competed in my first race; the Boston Beanpot crit. I was lapped 3 laps into the 1km race and then asked my teammates what “get on a wheel meant” and “why they were yelling that to me.” A couple months after that a sophomore (the one other non-freshman club member) told me I had to submit a club budget request for the following year to the school club 1financing committee within a week. I was hooked on both the racing and the organizational side.
How long have you been on the Board? Since September 2009
What motivated you to run for the Board? I was motivated by a desire to still be involved in collegiate cycling as well as help be part of the discussion on the overall mission, direction, and philosophy of collegiate cycling.
Do you ride very often? Every day, I probably only have 20-30 days off the bike all year. Race? Yes. I just recently ended two years as a full time amateur racer. I race over 100 days per year. Road and Track.
What kind of bike(s) do you have? ’08 Trek Madone with SRAM and an ’08 Cervelo P3 Track
1What’s your favorite part of being on the board? I enjoy being part of collegiate cycling and helping direct its philosophy.
What do you hope to change and/or accomplish while on the board of trustees? Continued growth and improved services for collegiate cycling.
What is special about collegiate cycling? It is more fun, laid back, and team oriented than standard racing without being any less competitive. It is also unique in the large percentage (relative to USAC in general) that both beginners and women make up in relation to its whole.
What is your real job? I am a high school teacher. I also coach a high school cycling club and run the Texas High School Cycling League.
Tell me three things about yourself that don’t involve cycling. I played football and rugby in high school. I enjoy traveling. I enjoy trying new restaurants.
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Please see the complete Spring 2010 Collegiate Race Calendar here.
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