Two Thousand and Sixteen has been a very long year. Not necessarily because of a grueling race schedule, tons of miles or lots of new records (or an INSANE election). There has been some of that at times, but the truly tiring pieces were personal and happened off the bike. Up until May of this year, we were working endlessly on renovating our home in Maryland, so that come June, we could sell it and move to Roanoke, Virginia. From there, settling into our new city and starting new jobs was exhausting, and right around then I resumed training and racing. It totally wore me out.
There are tons of transitions that come with moving to a new state and one of those inevitably was a small change in sponsors that made sense going forward in this new location. Thankfully, many are sticking with us for 2017 that have supported us for years, and for that we are so grateful.
Infinit Nutrition for all our fueling needs for training and racing! Infinit has been such a pillar of our support and I attribute most of my successful races to their rock solid nutrition options that never have let me down.
ESI Grips to keep us locked on the bar and ready to rock! Most riders know ESI and have used their grips at one time. Changing grips is like changing mattresses. Your body may not respond well. But with ESI, the consistency and reliability of them have been perfect for years. I can't imagine anything else.
Trek Bikes for the best wheeled vehicles out there! Getting on a Top Fuel this past year was one of the best choices I've made on bikes. Not only is it an extremely capable race machine, but it has been a great teacher, pushing me to new heights of skill and ability.
Bontrager for gear and parts that keep things sharp and fast! So far, Bontrager gear and components have been totally rock solid, and I'm really happy to be sticking with such reliable equipment.
Also in 2017, I am thrilled and grateful to be getting the chance to work with a few new companies that are on the leading edge of their industries. The following are partners that I believe in fully, through and through. What they offer the riding community is unparalleled and I can't recommend them enough. Check them out, you'll be very glad you did.
First, Swiftwick. If you've ever donned a pair of Swiftwick socks, you immediately know what you've gotten yourself into. Great compression, exceptionally fast at wicking moisture away from your feet, and consistently comfortable all day in any conditions. I never race in anything other than Swiftwick socks, so it is really exciting to have them as a partner in 2017!
Wolf Tooth Components are another essential part of every ride and race I do. As a forerunner in single ring and other small part manufacturing, Wolf Tooth is making the best solutions out there. With simply superior machining and designs, every part they make is top notch. I'm looking forward to fewer dropped chains in 2017 with Wolf Tooth!
Rudy Project are designing eye wear for performance, and pushing the bounds on whats possible. In 2017, I'll be working with them using, what I have found recently, to be exceedingly good frames and lenses. I'm very pleased for this opportunity to partner with a company that is pioneering new technologies for maximum comfort while pushing past previous limitations in performance!
And most significantly, I'll be racing for a new team and shop. Partnerships are exciting, and each company above is someone I am very proud to be affiliated with; and this new team is no different.
In this region there is no shop that is doing more for cycling than Blue Ridge Cyclery. With programs, camps, events, races and support at every level of the sport, they are truly finding new ways to get more people on bikes. And that is what we are all about. Pursue the Podium exists to get more of you out on and excited about bikes. Talking with owner Shawn Tevendale made it clear that our goals in that were aligned and that it would be a perfect fit. I am honored to be racing for a group that supports the riding community with such robust passion as the Blue Ridge Cyclery family does. So in 2017, I'll be kitting up in that great blue kit!
2017 will be quite a year, no matter what it brings. I am really looking forward to seeing some of you out on rides, at races, events and hopefully here, making this riding community better than ever.