Dion Smith, 19 years old from New Zealand. He strikes me as the rebal-ish, rambunctious, ornery, youngster of the group. He climbs very well and has to have a high watts/kg ratio for as small as he is. As Dion puts it “I like to break legs”. Dion also likes to fart in yoga class and flip the cameras off. Dion is the coffee snob of the bunch.
Daniel Clifford, 25 years old from Ireland. He has been in the states for two weeks. He’s a sprinter and break-a-way rider. He had Mexican food for the first time on Wed night. He is very knowledgeable about nutrition and training. Daniel has many years of racing experience and with that he brings an era of confidence. I get the feeling he knows what he’s doing. When I asked him how long he’s raced bikes, he replied, “ever since I can remember”. He is very soft spoken and somewhat shy.
Marcel Marcel Wallace (Delisser), Marcel is 22 years old and from Portland, Oregon. He rode on the USA Cycling U23 National team and is the number two coffee snob. We give him a hard time about his pale skin. It’s been winter for the past 5 months in Oregon with no sun, this may have something to do with the lack of color to his skin. He has raced bikes for years and is a good sprinter and break-a-way guy from what I know. He is somewhat like Daniel in the since he is soft spoken and respectful. I roomed with Marcel Marcel and he was excited about his new girlfriend. So much so, he couldn’t go the weekend without Skyping with her. Thankfully I don’t think Marcel Marcel wanted me to hear his baby talk with his new girlfriend so he figured Skype out on his phone and proceeded outside to talk for hours.
Serghei Tvetcov, 24 years old from Moldavia. Moldavia is a country between the Ukraine and Russia. Serghei is the most experienced having raced with some of the biggest US Pro teams. His latest team was Team Exergy. He has competed in races such as Tour of California and Tour of Colorado. Not sure what’s more impressive, his knowledge and experience or his power. He moved to Atlanta, GA three years ago to race bikes in the states. I’m unsure if he'll race with us all season, part of the season, or was just with us for camp. Whatever it may be, I’m thankful for anytime I spend learning from experienced racers like Serghei.
Brandon Trafton, 24 years old and born and raised in Northern California. He's well spoken and also a very respectful young man. He strikes me as the country boy from NorCal. He does listen to country music from time to time. Brandon is the only returning team member from last season. He suffered a season ending injury, breaking his femur at the Redlands Bicycle Classic stage race last year. Brandon has a responsible, team leader era to him. He is excited and motivated about the upcoming season.
Chuck Hutcheson, 40 year old fast guy! He served 10 years in the army stationed on the East Coast. Chuck has been racing bicycles for 30+ years and from the sounds of it wins. He says he's not climber, yet he came to camp fit and powerful enough to ride away from many of the guys in the mountains. Chuck is also the sarcastic playful joker of the bunch. In fact, Dion strait up told him, “I don’t know whether you’re serious or not when you speak”. Some of the foreigners may have a tough time getting a good read or understanding of Chuck’s humor. That’s what makes Chuck Chuck from what I gathered. Chuck likes to joke around, win bike races, and knows a lot about a lot of things. Smart guy!
Patrick Caro-Team Manager/Racer, Pat's who pulls it all together. Patrick knows how he wants his team to look, perform, and represent sponsors. He formed Circle Cycling/Coaching as his coaching business and one thing lead to another. He and Mike Fosselman Pure Gear, one of Pats clients who he trained for an Iron Man triathlon decided to partner up and create the team 2 years ago. Team Pure Gear presented by Full Circle Cycling is entering it’s third year of existence.
Mike Fosselman/Director is the owner of Pure Gear and our title sponsor and well as part team owner with Patrick. Mike joined us for our 200k ride on Friday as we made our way into Laguna Beach for a stop at the coffee shop. Both Pat and Mike explains it the same, Pat runs the show out on the road and deals with the riders and Mike is the behind the scene business man.
Paige DeVilbiss/Soigneur is a professional soigneur for the professional cycling team 5 Hour Energy pb Kenda. Paige helped with having bottles filled and snacks in the car ready when we needed them as we were on the road training. She drove the team car and had recovery drinks and food ready as we returned from rides. Paige was also our massage expert with the pre/post ride leg flushes each night.
Brian Rogers/Team Mechanic is a manager at Incycle Bicycles at the Chino Hills location. He joined us at our sponsor dinners, ran through our bikes after or before each ride, and even joined us for our Sunday morning ride. Great guy! Also Thanks to Keith at the Rancho Cucamonga location for the great bike fit.
Day #1: We all met at Pats in Claremont and went out for 4 hours in the mountains. There was snow and ice on the roads at the top. We were all slipping, sliding and busting our as*es.
Day #2: Brandon and Chuck joined the group and we did another 4 hours and 5800ft climbing in the mountains. We also did out photo shoot with Michael. After doing portraits and head shots of each of us Michael hung out of Brian’s (team mechanic) car window as we went up Glendora Mountain Road. After the ride I was tired and just got out of the shower to hear we were heading out to yoga in 20min. That was interesting as we were all a bit gassy from the recovery mixes and supplements from the rides. And of course it was the young Kiwi from New Zealand letting them rip, followed by Chuck and Brandon. Thursday night we were treated to an Italian feast as we met some of our sponsors. Pure Gear, John Elway Crown Toyota Scion, Xpedo Pedals, Incycle Bicycles, and Dispatching Solutions were all present and it was great meeting them. I hope to have more of an opportunity to chat with them and get to know them further.
Day #3: This was our long day. We rode to Laguna Beach and back. Total ride was nearly 200k totaling 6 hours on the bike with some hard pace lining on the return route. Mike Fosselman and another friend of Pats, Peter joined for the ride. On Friday night we had Pizza at Z Pizza, this is where we met Kaitlin, Patrick’s very cool and sweet friend. Kaitlin said Pat had told her of one rider from Portland. When she met Marcel Marcel, she said, “Oh you must be the guy from Portland”, he replied, “yes, I am. Why would you guess me?" She said, “we’ll I figured you were because of the pale skin”. LOL, we all got a good laugh out of that one.
Day #4: Then we did some climbing! Totaling close to 8,000ft and 4 hours we climbed GMR and climbed to Crystal Lake where we could actually see the LA skyline, apparently that’s rare. There were amazing views all week. At this point my legs were feeling a bit worked.
Day #5: There were rumors going around about the 5th day being a couple easy hours- not the case! We finished camp with a climb to Mt Baldy totaling another 3 hours and 5800ft of ascending.
Other cool things about camp: The ice cold pool and hot tub we cycled our legs in and out of for recovery. The bible in the bike lane on the 133/Laguna Canyon Chuck had to go back to see if there was any money in. Paige unleashing on the drunk partiers in the pool on Wed night. Uncontrollable fits of laughter in the car ride back from dinner on Saturday night- Dion, Daniel, Paige, and Serghei were apart of that. Most good bike racers from other countries I find are very funny. I think it's because they are good and they are confident, so they can unleash and be themselves and for some reason most are funny. I put Serghei in that category.
Totals: 349miles, 28,200 ft climbed, 19.5 hours on the bike, 13,050 Kj (Shawn), 4 slips on the ice (day#1), 4 flat tires, one stop sign warning from the Glendora police department (note: Stop at stop signs anywhere in Glendora on Foothill Rd), and the weather was perfect everyday!!
All and all it was a great camp. We got to know each other and our personalities. We learned about our sponsors who make this all possible. We had meeting and discussed what is expected from us as we represent our sponsors. We will take pride in our team and our team mates. We will race hard and earn respect from the more established teams in the US pro peloton!!