May 15, 2007

Sport Short 5/15/07: Haskell paces velo at championships

After making a statement at the Midwest Collegiate Cycling Conference Regional Championships April 28–29, the velo club capped off its strong season by taking second in its conference. While the race marked the end of the road for most of the team, a trio of Chicago bikers kept on riding, hitting the road with impressive outings at the Collegiate Road National Championships this weekend.

Overcoming setbacks due to illness last year, fourth-year Megan Myrick returned to Lawrence, KS, in much better health this spring along with a fellow repeat qualifier, graduate student Jon Tenney. Conference champion and first-time national qualifier, graduate student Devon Haskell rounded out the Maroons, wheeling up against the best in the nation.

“The race was the biggest pack we’ve ever been in,” said Haskell, who didn’t get to see much competitive racing last year. “I think our team did really well overall.”

Pacing the Maroons in Lawrence, Haskell took third in the road race and finished sixth in the criterium. Not too far behind the newcomer, Myrick placed 28th in the first road race and 17th in the criterium.

“For both of us, it was really encouraging to look over and see your teammate,” Haskell said.

Tenney, however, had to go it alone in the men’s competition. Although he managed to stay with the main pack for most of the road race, Tenney pulled in 47th, no small accomplishment for an event that sees most of the competitors drop after falling behind the lead bikers. He was pulled from the criterium.

“He stayed with the pack for most of the race,” Haskell said. “The ‘crit’ was super fast.”

Looking to next season, velo will lose Myrick and one of its B racers but hopes to continue to attract some new recruits and make an even bigger showing at Nationals.