Champion System Unveils Roster for World Ports

 

Champion System Unveils Roster for World Ports

Champion System Unveils Roster for World Ports

Champion System Unveils Roster for World Ports

Hong Kong, SAR – The Champion System Pro Cycling Team will send a veteran roster that includes local Dutchman Bobbie Traksel and four-time Irish road champion Matt Brammeier to the World Ports Classic, which begins Friday.

 

Champion System General Manager Ed Beamon said the team’s diverse line-up should allow Asia’s only pro continental team to make an impact in its inaugural appearance at the two-day race held between the port cities of Rotterdam and Antwerp.

 

“The team has a strong schedule of races in Belgium, Netherlands and France over the next month and the guys are anxious to keep Champion System in the mix,” Beamon said.

 

Beamon said he is looking to his most experienced riders – Brammeier, Traksel and sprinter Fabian Schnaidt, who all raced together during the Tour of Qinghai Lake in July – to lead the team in the races that both ended in bunch sprints in last year’s inaugural edition.

 

Nine-year professional Traksel, who was third on Stage 2 of West-Vlaanderen in March and earned most aggressive rider honors at the Tour of Oman in February before being sidelined by injury and illness, said he is motivated for what he sees as his hometown race.

 

“I know the roads and want to use this as a weapon during these two days,” Traksel said. “World Ports Classic is racing two days over my training parcours, and for a home race, I’m always fully motivated.”

 

Brammeier said the team is eager to use Traksel’s experience to get into breakaways, as well as contest the sprint finishes.

 

“World Ports will be a tough race but one where motivation will be key,” Brammeier said. “It’s a race through the small twisty roads of Belgium and the Netherlands and having Bobbie serves as a big boost. We have a lot of options and we are looking to utilize them.”

 

Rounding out the eight-man roster is stagiaire Dion Smith, who signed with Champion System in early August. The 20-year-old was Champion System’s best-placed rider in 17th, 33 seconds behind race winner Thor Hushovd (BMC Racing Team), earlier this month at the Arctic Race of Norway.

 

Champion System Pro Cycling Team World Ports Classic (Aug 30-31):

Matt Brammeier (IRL), Gregor Gazvoda (SLO), Chan Jae Jang (KOR), Mart Ojavee (EST), Fabian Schnaidt (GER), Dion Smith (NZL), Bobbie Traksel (NED), Kin San Wu (HKG).

Champion System Taking Determined Squad to Colorado

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Champion System Taking Determined Squad to Colorado

Champion System Taking Determined Squad to Colorado
Aspen, Colo – The Champion System Pro Cycling Team is sending an experienced roster of climbers to vie for the overall title of the seven-day USA Pro Challenge that rolls out Monday in Aspen.

Asia’s only pro continental team will look to Americans Chad Beyer, Chris Butler and Craig Lewis for results in the 967-kilometer race, which features more than 16,017 meters of climbing. Butler finished in the top 20 at the race last year and was 12th overall last week at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah. Beyer finished eighth on Stage 2 in Utah, while Lewis earned the most aggressive rider jersey on Stage 4 after launching a solo attack from a five-man breakaway.

“Lewis will be motivated to perform well in his adopted home state,” Champion System General Manager Ed Beamon said. “I expect him to rise to the occasion.”

Butler, who hails from Greenville, S.C., said that last year he translated racing in Utah into better form in Colorado and expects to do the same this year. The fourth-year professional said his knowledge of decisive stages, including Thursday’s 165.6-km race with nearly 3,550 meters of climbing and a summit finish in Beaver Creek, and Friday’s 16.1-km individual time trial around Vail, should help him improve on last year’s results.

“My body responds well to racing and I am definitely at another level after Utah,” Butler said. “The slightly uphill time trial in place of a flat city time trial and a familiar course around Beaver Creek may actually bode better for me this year. If I could get a top 10, that would be fantastic.”

At the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, stagiaire Gregory Brenes had an impressive debut with a sixth-place finish on Stage 3 and seventh on Stage 4. Beamon said he is eager to see how the 25-year old performs in the Colorado Rockies.

“Brenes has shown good form and I think Colorado will suit him well,” Beamon said. “I expect to see him and Beyer contesting stages.”

Taipei rider Chun Kai Feng will make his U.S. debut at the race. In June, the first-year professional had three top 10 finishes at the Tour de Korea, including runner-up on Stage 2. Beamon said he brought in Feng to add depth to the roster.

“I expect Feng’s aggressive style to pay dividends as the race opens up,” Beamon said.

Champion System Pro Cycling Team USA Pro Challenge Roster (Aug. 19-25):
Chad Beyer (USA), Gregory Brenes (CRC), Chris Butler (USA), Fu Shiu Cheung (HKG), Chun Kai Feng (TPE), Craig Lewis (USA), Ryota Nishizono (JPN), Gang Xu (CHN).

Sport Directors: Ed Beamon (USA), Chris Wherry (USA).

Tour of Utah

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Chad Beyer (Champion Systems)

By Chad Beyer (Champion Systems Pro Cycling)

The Tour of Utah turned out to truly be “America’s toughest stage race.”.I came into the race with some solid training under my belt and high hopes. I was pretty confident I would be able to be top 15 or 20, and get a nice result in a stage or two, but those dreams quickly faded after my crash on stage two. I’ve crashed before, just as every pro cyclist has, but never at 65kph. Right after the crash, I remember jumping up and just screaming and shaking my fists. I was later told by medical staff I was screaming so violently, they were scared to come anywhere near me! I wasn’t just screaming because I was in pain, I was screaming because I knew I was hurt; hurt enough that it was going to have a serious impact on my performance. All of that hard work and suffering in training was going to go down the drain.

After a good bit of screaming, I looked at my bike. It was in shambles. My team director had already grabbed my spare off the roof and handed it to me. I jumped back on, and, in a world of hurt, fueled by adrenaline, I pedaled and chased back up to the peloton. I was suffering. I didn’t know if I was even going to make it through the stage. The stage was long and I had plenty of time to think. I was injured, that was for sure, but I decided to just give it everything I had. I hate quitting and I wasn’t going to give myself that option. I had worked too hard to quit. So, I put my head down and gritted it out. As the finish neared, I found Craig and told him I was going to give it a go in the sprint.

He replied in disbelief, “Are you sure?”

I said,”Yeah, man.”

I guess that was enough for him. He dropped me off in about 15th position with about 1.5km to go and I gave it what I had. With my ripped up jersey flapping in the wind, I managed 8th. I could live with that.

The next day, I was definitely feeling the effects of the crash. From stage two on, I was in survival mode. I was drained. I felt like I was in the third week of a grand tour. I’m sure my director was just waiting for me to ask if I could drop out, and I’m not really sure why I continued. I’m sure my dad, sister, and fiancee coming to see the last three stages had something to do with it, but it was more than that. I think the hope for “good legs” was also driving me. I just wanted to do well and help my team as much as possible. At the end of the day I get paid to race my bike not quit races. I was finally feeling a bit better on the last stage, not good enough to make the breakaway or to get a result, but I was feeling much better. With US Pro Cycling Challenge right around the corner, I’m feeling optimistic.

Champion System’s Bell Wins Canadian Road Title

Champion System's Bell Wins Canadian Road Title

Champion System’s Bell Wins Canadian Road Title

Champion System’s Bell Wins Canadian Road Title

Saint-Georges, Quebec, Canada – Zach Bell of the Champion System Pro Cycling Team captured his first Canadian national road title Saturday by out-sprinting six other survivors from an original 12-man breakaway that escaped early in the 180-kilometer race.

 

Bell said he knew if the race came down to a sprint, chances were good he would earn his third victory of the season and the biggest of his seven-year professional career.

[Read more…]

Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic

Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic

Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic

by Ryan Roth (Champion Systems)

We raced the “new” Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic for the first time yesterday.  With a slightly altered course and the finish line atop the Manayunk Wall, there was much speculation as to how these changes would affect the race. Our team had a plan to be active early on and to have representation in any significant moves, but without depleting ourselves too much for the difficult finale. Hopefully, we could place 2 or more of our guys in a breakaway to play their hands for the win.

The race was quick from the start with numerous groups trying to get away. Eventually, as often happens in Philly, a large split occurred that put some panic into the field behind. I was not up there.  Heading into the wall with the help of some teammates, I was well positioned for a tough acceleration that ripped apart the field. While I ground my way up the steepest section of the climb, seeing my heart rate hit the 190s, I still took note of who looked good and who was suffering. When the dust had settled, a front group of around 60-70 was left to take on the second half of the race.

With such a large group no one really wanted to commit to driving the pace and the inevitable attacks started. My teammate Mathias covered a good group and I tried to follow the next one across. We were soon pulled back, but Chad Beyer had better luck and bridged the gap giving us 2 out of approximately 20. The gap rose to 2 minutes until various teams started to chase. NetApp, Bissel, Jelly Belly, and UHC contributed as the break crumbled and only the strongest were left in front. Chad from our team was still there and things looked good for us. However, the fierce battle for position the last time into the wall swept them up with only a few kilometers remaining.

I started the climb around 10th place. Unfortunately, my legs could not help me improve on that. The other Champion System rider left in the field was Gregor Gazvoda, wh,o despite starting the the climb way back, blasted to a solid 5th place finish. In the end, I didn’t quite meet my goal, but I’m left with motivation and excitement for next year’s race.

 

Jang Takes King of the Mountains Jersey in Japan

 

Jang Takes King of the Mountains Jersey in Japan

Jang Takes King of the Mountains Jersey in Japan

Jang Takes King of the Mountains Jersey in Japan

Mino, Japan – Champion System Pro Cycling Team’s

 

At the finish, Chan Jae Jang had traded his South Korean national road champion jersey for the red jersey of king of the mountains. (Champion System Pro Cycling Team photo.)

Chan Jae Jang took the lead in the king of the mountains classification after featuring in a breakaway on Tuesday’s Stage 2 of the Tour of Japan while teammate Adiq Othman notched a top 10 finish.

 

Champion System Assistant Director Franky Van Haesebroucke said he asked his riders to approach the 160.7-kilometer race on a seven-lap circuit course like a one-day race, not a stage race.

 

The day started with various breakaway attempts, but it was Champion System’s Jang and Ji Min Jung (Team KSPO) that finally escaped on the initial summit of the only categorized climb on the circuit. The duo eventually gained a nine-and-a-half minute lead with Jang cresting first each time over the climb.

[Read more…]

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

 

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Beyer Earns Most Courageous Rider Jersey at California

Santa Clarita, Calif. – Champion System Pro Cycling Team’s Chad Beyer earned Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer® “most courageous rider” jersey at the Amgen Tour of California after spending much of Tuesday’s Stage 3 in a four-man break.

 

Champion System General Manager Ed Beamon said having a rider in the breakaway was the team’s main objective.

 

“It was Chad that we wanted in the move because we thought it was a good opportunity for him to potentially get a little time back,” Beamon said.

[Read more…]

I pulled through and looked back by Kevin Mullervy

 

The Twilight Criterium  by Kevin Mullervy (Champion Systems p/b Stans No Tubes

The Twilight Criterium
by Kevin Mullervy (Champion Systems p/b Stans No Tubes

The Twilight Criterium

by Kevin Mullervy (Champion Systems p/b Stans No Tubes

 

Athens Terrapin Twilight is unlike any other crit we race all year. With Athens being a big college town the atmosphere is very unique.  It has a much younger crowd then we see all year. There are thousands of college kids out there just having a good time and looking for a good show.  It seems like the whole college comes out and fills the course with wall to wall people and you can’t even hear yourself think.

 

Having a small squad for Champion System p/b Stan’s No Tubes we had to play our cards right to get a good result. It helped out a lot to get a call up and not have to worry about getting good position at the start. Right from the start I could tell I had really good legs. I felt very comfortable in the pack and did not feel under pressure the whole race. I really wanted to get in a breakaway but I knew if United Healthcare were not in it, it would be unlikely to stay away. UHC have won every crit they have entered this year in the US, so I know a lot of guys wanted to break that streak.

[Read more…]

Charlotte Presbyterian Invitational by Kevin Mullervy

 

Keven Mullervy (Champion System p/b Stan’s No Tubes)

Keven Mullervy (Champion System p/b Stan’s No Tubes)

Charlotte Presbyterian Invitational

by Keven Mullervy (Champion System p/b Stan’s No Tubes)

 

When the race schedule comes out at the beginning of the year, many riders put a star next to the Presbyterian Invitational. With it being the highest paid crit and a great course, many teams want to make an impact at this race. Going into the weekend, I knew all the “A” squads would be there to get a result.

 

With over 120 guys on the start list, I was very fortunate to get a call-up for being 6th overall in the USA Crit Series.  I didn’t have to line up super early and I wouldn’t have to fight to move up during the first few laps.

 

From the gun there were many attacks and a few guys getting a small gap, but nothing serious developed. It was still fast, but a lot of guys were looking at each other at the front to see who would chase. Before I knew it I was hearing the bell for the mid-race prime. It got super fast and single-file, and an 11-man break rolled off the front.   Many teams had at least one rider in there, so the whole peloton sat up and blocked the road and the break got 40 seconds.

[Read more…]

Champion System’s Gang Xu Most Aggressive in Trentino Opener

Champion System's Gang Xu Most Aggressive in Trentino Opener

Champion System’s Gang Xu Most Aggressive in Trentino Opener

Champion System’s Gang Xu Most Aggressive in Trentino Opener

 

Lienz, Austria — Champion System Pro Cycling Team’s Gang Xu earned the most aggressive rider jersey on the opening stage of the Giro del Trentino Tuesday.

 

Tuesday’s opening day featured two stages: a 128.5-kilometer road race and a 14.1-km team time trial.

 

Heading into the road race, Xu said that recently he had been feeling strong and was anxious to make an impact.

 

“I really wanted to help the team,” Xu said. “I knew my best opportunity would be to try to make the breakaway.”

[Read more…]