At the beginning of the summer, Tom Davis, director and coach of the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club's cycling team, hoped his group would build the foundation for a nationally ranked program.
The new club seems to be on its way after Bo Randolph won a Colorado Junior State Criterium title Sunday in Denver.
"To win like that, on a state level, is remarkable," Davis said. "It says a lot about our future as a cycling club -- and as a road racing team."
It took a gutsy move by Randolph just before the final corner of the race for the Steamboat resident to win. The race included 20 of the best 15- to 16-year-old riders in state.
"I started my sprint early," Randolph said. "I'm not the best sprinter, but I'm a pretty good endurance rider."
Randolph's plan was to build a solid lead going into the corner and then hold onto it down the final stretch to the finish line.
"I never dreamed I was going to win the state title," Randolph said. "It was so exciting because I never expected it."
Randolph is one of five members of Steamboat's elite cycling team. Randolph said the group trains six days a week and has attended several top-level races this summer. He hopes to move from a Category 4 racer (one of the lowest levels) to a Category 3 racer so that he can race at the junior nationals coming up later this month.
All of the members of the elite team are also Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club skiers. Randolph is a member of the Winter Sports Club's freestyle program. His teammates include alpine racers Marsh Gooding, Derek Nickum and Tina Roberts. Cross country skier Korie Steitz also is a member of the cycling team.
Gooding finished 13th in the 17- to 18-year-old category. Davis also has a group of 13 children between 11 and 15 years old who compete in the club's mountain biking program. Those riders have been posting top results in the Town Challenge race series all summer.
"Building this into a nationally ranked program has been my goal since we started," Davis said. "I think we are right on track."
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