Tuesday, March 28, 2017

2017 Road Series: Nittany Classic (3/25-3/26)

State College, PA was kind enough to hold off the imposing rain for both days of racing, as if showing mercy for those with the strength of will to tackle the lung-bursting climbs and face-melting speeds of the Penn State road race and criterium. Bucknell Cycling fielded six racers each day to experience the 1874 feet of climbing per lap of the road race and all six corners of the crit.

Steve and Schlichty focused at the road race start, grey skies overhead.

Results - Black Moshannon Road Race

Jorden off to tackle Black Mo!
A staggered start of Women’s C (19 miles) followed by Women’s D (19 miles) sent two Lady Blues to be the first from Bucknell to tackle Black Mo - senior and second-year racer Ellie Perry (C) and senior and first-year racer Jorden Sneed (D). With a 6th place finish to match last week’s road race, Ellie picked up 9 points for the team. But the effort was especially impressive for Jorden, for whom the legendary climb was her first-ever road race.

Evelyn flying down the Black Mo descent.
Senior Alex Breakstone was next on course with the Men’s A (62 miles), followed by senior Steven Robare and first-year Andrew Schlicht with the Men’s C (41 miles). Both of the C boys completed the massive climb twice, with Andrew leading the two in the first lap and Steven leading through the finish line. Sophomore Evelyn Korbich was the last on course with the Women’s A (41 miles), and also completed two impressive laps over Back Mo, scooping up 12 points for the team with a 14th place finish. Full results for the road race can be found HERE.

Results - Penn State Frat Row Criterium

Steve through the chicane in the Men's C chase group.

The Men’s C squad, composed of senior Ward Prescott, senior Steven Robare, and first-year Andrew Schlicht, were the first to race the crit for the Baby Blues. The pace was brutally fast, with only 14 of the 39 starters finishing the race. Steven put an impressive effort in the chase group, but ultimately the boys still had Black Moshannon haunting their legs.

Second on course was senior Ellie Perry with the Women’s C race. After repping the baby blue with her nose out in the wind for a few laps, Ellie earned 10 points for Bucknell Cycling with a fourth place finish from a seven-woman bunch sprint. The Women's​ A crit saw sophomore Evelyn Korbich as the driving force in a continually-growing chase group as riders popped one by one from the relentless front group led by the ECCC yellow jersey. She picked up 9 more points for the team with a second 14th place finish for the weekend.

Senior Alex Breakstone sat firmly in the bunch for the first half of the 60 minute Men’s A crit, but suddenly had every Bucknell Cycling fan on their feet when out of seemingly nowhere he came around a corner alone off the front, pushing for a solo breakaway. An unfortunate crash in the next lap left Alex with only superficial road rash and some torn kit, but left his fans with broken hearts. We look forward to next weekend, when hopefully luck will be on his side! Full results for the criterium can be found HERE.
A Stone in the Zone... (Alex)

Other News

Innovation at it's finest, feat. Ward,
Papa K, and Alex's wheel.

The grill came out for the first time this race season over the weekend (and so did the minivan seats - see at right), with Papa K making every team in a 50 foot radius jealous of the delicious hotdogs and burgers traditional for Bucknell Cycling. The team devoured those as well as the leftover Panera bagels from last weekend and more delicious treats from Country Cupboard, and, as usual, plenty of twizzlers and G-mix.

Bucknell Cycling will be making a guest appearance in the ACCC (Atlantic Collegiate Cycling Conference) next weekend, for the UMD Route One Rampage Criterium in Hyattsville, MD and the JHU Hostetter-Wagner Road Race in White Hall, MD.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

2017 Road Series: Philly Phyler (3/18-3/19)

Philadelphia was still feeling the aftermath of the massive blizzard that smashed the East Coast a few days prior when the team started trickling in for the ECCC’s first race weekend. Saturday’s racing was punctuated by still-melting snow banks and Sunday’s criterium was cancelled due to parallel-parked cars on the course trapped by snow pack. But at Saturday’s Team Time Trial and Circuit Race along the Schuylkill River, it was cloudy skies and cold rain that prevented all but the toughest riders from braving the conditions - so naturally, Bucknell Cycling fielded eight racers.


Two seniors and fourth-year racers of the team, Ward Prescott and Steven Robare, were joined by two first-year riders, Matt McGauley and Andrew Schlicht, to start the day with a Men’s C 11 mile team time trial. Though this was the second race this season for the first-years, it was their first in the ECCC. All four boys put in a great effort, riding for the first time together and placing 6th out of 8.

The Men’s C TTT team hardly had a break before jumping into their 26 mile circuit race, followed closely by the Men’s D 20 mile circuit race which featured two more new riders, Mitch Warner and Peter Merhige. The course showed no love for the boys - Matt suffered from a puncture on the first lap, and in the last lap Andrew went down in a crash (but fortunately rejoined the race unscathed to finish in the top half). But the rest of the team not on-course cheered all six racers on, and sophomore Mitch scooped up 18 points for the team with a second place finish in the Men’s D field.

Senior and second-year racer Ellie Perry scooped up 9 points for the team with a 6th place finish in her first Women’s C race (26 miles), and senior and fourth-year racer Alex Breakstone matched with another 9 points from his top-half finish in the shortened Men’s A race (40 miles). Both races saw a mobile squad of Bucknell Cyclists cheering on the peloton, particularly their teammates in the race. Full race results can be found HERE.

Congratulations to all the first-time racers - we are looking forward to more excellent finishes from our Young Bucks! Keep an eye out for the debut races for our young Lady Blues, new women riders to join the team this year, in the coming weeks.

Other News

This weekend the team was generously housed by president Eli Bravo’s family, and as Philadelphia is a relatively central location for many other Bucknell Cycling families, the highlight of Saturday was a massive potluck dinner at the Bravo house. Thank you to the Breakstones, Schlichts, Warners, Merhiges, McGauleys, and especially the Bravos for somehow managing to provide more delicious food than the team could possibly eat! Thanks always to Papa K (Gary Kahler) who kicked off yet another season working with the Bucknell Cycling team, and thanks to junior Kurt Schlosser and sophomore Eli Bravo who, though not racing, were instrumental in supporting the eight racers.

The team would also like to thank the Lewisburg Panera Bread for their generous donation of dozens of bagels and Country Cupboard (vis-à-vis Matty’s Sporthouse Grill)  for their donation of cookies and other treats to fuel the team’s adventures, as well as all of our other sponsors for their contributions to the team!